I march to-morrow for Breslau, and shall be there in four days. You Berliners have a spirit of prophecy which goes beyond me. In fine, I go my road; and you will shortly see Silesia ranked in the list of our provinces. Adieu! this is all I have time to tell you. Religion and our brave soldiers will do the rest. CHAPTER XIX. THE INVASION OF BOHEMIA.

Frederick regarded the Academy as his pet institution, and was very jealous of the illustrious philosopher, whom he had invited to Berlin to preside over its deliberations. Voltaire, knowing this very well, and fully aware that to strike the Academy391 in the person of its president was to strike Frederick, wrote an anonymous communication to a review published in Paris, in which he accused M. Maupertuisfirst, of plagiarism, in appropriating to himself a discovery made by another; secondly, of a ridiculous blunder in assuming that said discovery was a philosophical principle, and not an absurdity; and thirdly, that he had abused his position as president of the Academy in suppressing free discussion, by expelling from the institution a member merely for not agreeing with him in opinion. These statements were probably true, and on that account the more damaging.

Voltaire has given a detailed account of the incidents connected with this visit to his Prussian majesty. It is a humiliating exhibition of the intrigues and insincerity which animated the prominent actors in those scenes. On the 29th of December, the Old Dessauer, with thirty-five thousand men, crossed the frontiers and entered Saxony. He marched rapidly upon Leipsic, and seized the town, from which a division of Rutowskis army precipitately fled. Leopold found here quite a supply of commissary and ordnance stores. He also replenished his empty army-chest by levying a contribution of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars upon the inhabitants.368 Then, by a rapid march northeast to Torgo, on the Elbe, he captured another imperial magazine. Turning south, he pressed his troops along up the river to Myssen, which was within two days easy march of Dresden. Here there was a bridge across the Oder. Frederick was pushing his troops, by forced marches, from Hennersdorf, to effect a junction with Leopold at Myssen. Unitedly they were to fall upon Grüne and Rutowski at Dresden. In the mean time, also, Prince Charles, a despondent man, crushed by domestic woe and humiliating defeats, was moving, by not very energetic steps, to re-enforce the allied troops at Dresden.

I, as well as many others, had hardly time to put on my clothes. As I was leading my wife, with a young child in her arms, and my other children and servants before mewho were almost naked, having, ever since the first fright, run about as they got out of bedthe bombs and red-hot balls fell round462 about us. The bombs, in their bursting, dashed the houses to pieces, and every thing that was in their way. Every body that could got out of the town as fast as possible. The crowd of naked and in the highest degree wretched people was vastly great. Whatever answer may now be returned from England I will have nothing to do with it. Whether negative, affirmative, or evasive, to me it shall be as nothing. You, madam, must now choose between the Duke of Weissenfels and the Marquis of Schwedt. If you do not choose, you and Wilhelmina may prepare for Oranienburg, where you shall suffer the just penalty of mutiny against the authority set over you by God and men.

My dear Voltaire,France has been considered thus far as the asylum of unfortunate monarchs. I wish that my capital should become the temple of great men. Come to it, then, my dear Voltaire, and give whatever orders can tend to render a residence in it agreeable to you. My wish is to please you, and wishing this, my intention is to enter entirely into your views. General Daun, with the utmost caution, followed the retreating army. Though his numbers were estimated at seventy-five thousand, he did not dare to encounter Frederick with his thirty thousand Prussians on the field of battle. With skill which has elicited the applause of all military critics, Frederick, early in August, continued his retreat till he reached, on the 8th of the month, Grüssau, on his own side of the mountains in Silesia. On this march he wrote to his brother Henry from Skalitz: