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Every year Frederick William rigorously reviewed all his garrisons. Though accompanied by a numerous staff, he traveled with Spartan simplicity, regardless of exposure and fatigue.33 From an early age he took Fritz with him on these annual reviews. A common vehicle, called the sausage car, and which was the most primitive of carriages, was often used by the king in his rough travels and hunting excursions. This consisted of a mere stuffed pole, some ten or twelve feet long, upon which one sits astride, as if riding a rail. It rested upon wheels, probably with a sort of stirrup for the feet, and the riders, ten or a dozen, were rattled along over the rough roads, through dust or mud, alike regardless of winters frost or summers rain. The cast-iron king, rejoicing in hardship and exposure, robbed his delicate child even of needful sleep, saying, Too much sleep stupefies a fellow.

Frederick, establishing his head-quarters at Chrudim, did not suppose the Austrians would think of moving upon him until the middle of June. Not till then would the grass in that cold region afford forage. But Maria Theresa was inspired by energies fully equal to those of her renowned assailant. Undismayed by the powerful coalition against her, she sent Prince Charles, her brother-in-law, early in May, at the head of an army thirty thousand strong, to advance by a secret, rapid flank march, and seize the Prussian magazines beyond the Elbe. About seven oclock in the morning the king ascended an eminence, and carefully scanned the field, where sixty thousand men were facing each other, soon to engage in mutual slaughter. There were two spectacles which arrested his attention. The one was the pomp, and pageantry, and panoply of war, with its serried ranks, its prancing steeds, its flashing armor, its waving banners, its inspiriting bugle-pealsa scene in itself beautiful and sublime in the highest conceivable degree.

149 The queen can not console herself for this reverse. She vents her despair in the abuse of that poor princess. She wanted me to refuse the marriage decidedly, and told me that she should not mind my quarreling again with the king provided I would only show firmness, in which case she would be well able to support me. I would not follow her advice, and declared to her plainly that I did not choose to incur the displeasure of my father, which had already caused me so much suffering.

The five great powers of Europe, who have sworn alliance, and conspired to ruin the Marquis of Brandenburg, how might they puzzle their heads to guess what he is now doing! Scheming some dangerous plan, think they, for the next campaign, collecting funds, studying about magazines for man and horse; or is he deep in negotiations to divide his enemies, and get new allies for himself? Not a bit of it. He is sitting peaceably in his room feeding his dogs.165