"First, he asked me, If it was true that the French Nation was so angered against him; if the King was, and if you were? I answered," --mildly reprobatory, yet conciliative, "Hm, no, nothing permanent, nothing to speak of." "He then deigned to speak to me, at large, of the reasons which had induced him to be so hasty with the Peace." "Extremely remarkable reasons;" "dare not trust them to this Paper" (Broglio-Belleisle discrepancies, we guess, distracted Broglio procedures);--they have no concern with that Pallandt-Letter Story, --"they do not turn on the pretended Secret Negotiations at the Court of Vienna [which are not pretended at all, as I among others well know], in regard to which your Eminency has condescended to clear yourself [by denying the truth, poor Eminency; there was no help otherwise]. All I dare state is, that it seems to me easy to lead back the mind of this Sovereign, whom the situation of his Territories, his interest, and his taste would appear to mark as the natural ally of France."
"He said farther [what may be relied on as true by his Eminency Fleury, and my readers here], That he passionately wished to see Bohemia in the Emperor's hands [small chance for it, as things now go!]; that he renounced, with the best faith in the world, all claim whatever on Berg and Julich; and that, in spite of the advantageous proposals which Lord Stair was making him, he thought only of keeping Silesia. That he knew well enough the House of Austria would, one day, wish to recover that fine Province, but that he trusted he could keep his conquest; that he had at this time 130,000 soldiers always ready; that he would make of Neisse, Glogau, Brieg, fortresses as strong as Wesel [which he is now diligently doing, and will soon have done]; that besides he was well informed the Queen of Hungary already owed 80,000,000 German crowns, which is about 300 millions of our money [about 12 millions sterling]; that her Provinces, exhausted, and lying wide apart, would not be able to make long efforts; and that the Austrians, for a good while to come, could not of themselves be formidable." Of themselves, no: but with Britannic soup-royal in quantity?--
"My Lord Hyndford had spoken to him" as if France were entirely discouraged and done for: How false, Monseigneur! "And Lord Stair in his letters represented France, a month ago, as ready to give in. Lord Stair has not ceased to press his Majesty during this Aix Excursion even:" and, in spite of what your Eminency hears from the Hague, "there was, on the 30th of August, an Englishman at Aix on the part of Milord Stair; and he had speech with the King of Prussia [CROYEZ MOI!] in a little Village called Boschet [Burtscheid, where are hot wells], a quarter of a league from Aix. I have been assured, moreover, that the Englishman returned in much discontent. On the other hand, General Schmettau, who was with the King [elder Schmettau, Graf SAMUEL, who does a great deal of envoying for his Majesty], sent, at that very time, to Brussels, for Maps of the Moselle and of the Three Bishoprics, and purchased five copies,"--means to examine Milord Stair's proposed Seat of War, at any rate. (Here is a pleasant friend to have on visit to you, in the next apartment, with such an eye and such a nose!) ...
"Monseigneur," finely insinuates Voltaire in conclusion, "is not there" a certain Frenchman, true to his Country, to his King, and to your Eminency, with perhaps peculiar facilities for being of use, in such delicate case?--"JE SUIS," much your Eminency's. [
Friedrich, on the day while Voltaire at Brussels sat so busy writing of him, was at Salzdahl, visiting his Brunswick kindred there, on the road home to his usual affairs. Old Fleury, age ninety gone, died 29th January, 1743,--five months and nineteen days after this Letter. War-Minister Breteuil had died January 1st. Here is room for new Ministers and Ministries; for the two D'Argensons,--if it could avail their old School-fellow, or France, or us; which it cannot much.
CARNIVAL PHENOMENA IN WAR-TIME.
Readers were anticipating it, readers have no sympathy; but the sad fact is, Britannic Majesty has NOT got out his sword; this second paroxysm of his proves vain as the first did! Those laggard Dutch, dead to the Cause of Liberty, it is they again. Just as the hour was striking, they--plump down, in spite of magnanimous Stair, into their mud again; cannot be hoisted by eugineering. And, after all that filling and emptying of water- casks, and pumping and puffing, and straining of every fibre for a twelvemonth past, Britannic Majesty had to sit down again, panting in an Olympian manner, with that expensive long sword of his still sticking in the scabbard.
Tongue cannot tell what his poor little Majesty has suffered from those Dutch,--checking one's noble rage, into mere zero, always; making of one's own glorious Army a mere expensive Phantasm! Hanoverian, Hessian, British: 40,000 fighters standing in harness, year after year, at such cost; and not the killing of a French turkey to be had of them in return. Patience, Olympian patience, withal! He cantons his troops in the Netherlands Towns; many of the British about Ghent (who consider the provisions, and customs, none of the best); [Letters of Officers, from Ghent (