"The disgust of Landgraf Wilhelm was infinite; who, honest man, saw in all this merely an artifice of Carteret's, To undo the Kaiser with his French Allies, to quirk him out of his poor help from the French, and have him at their mercy. 'Shame on it!' cried Landgraf Wilhelm aloud, and many others less aloud, Klinggraf and King Friedrich among them: 'What a Carteret!' The Landgraf turned away with indignation from perfidious England; and began forming quite opposite connections. 'You shall not even have my hired 6,000, you perfidious! Thing done with such dexterity of art, too!' thought the Landgraf,--and continued to think, till evidence turned up, after many months. [CARTERET PAPERS (in British Museum), Additional MSS. No. 22,529 (May, 1743-January, 1745); in No. 22,527 (January- September, 1742) are other Landgraf-Wilhelm pieces of Correspondence.] This was Friedrich's opinion too,-- permanently, I believe;--and that of nearly all the world, till the thing and the Doer of the thing were contemptuously forgotten. A piece of Machiavelism on the part of Carteret and perfidious Albion,--equal in refined cunning to that of the Ships with foul bottom, which vanished from Cadiz two years ago, and were admired with a shudder by Continental mankind who could see into millstones!
"This is the second stroke of Machiavellian Art by those Islanders, in their truly vulpine method. Stroke of Art important for this History; and worth the attention of English readers,--being almost of pathetic nature, when one comes to understand it! Carteret, for this Hanau business, had clangor enough to undergo, poor man, from Germans and from English; which was wholly unjust. 'His trade,' say the English--(or used to say, till they forgot their considerable Carteret altogether)--'was that of rising in the world by feeding the mad German humors of little George; a miserable trade.' Yes, my friends;--but it was not quite Carteret's, if you will please to examine! And none say, Carteret did not do his trade, whatever it was, with a certain greatness,--at least till habits of drinking rather took him, Poor man: impatient, probably, of such fortune long continued! For he was thrown out, next Session of Parliament, by Noodle of Newcastle, on those strange terms; and never could get in again, and is now forgotten; and there succeeded him still more mournful phenomena,--said Noodle or the poor Pelhams, namely,--of whom, as of strauge minus quantities set to manage our affairs, there is still some dreary remembrance in England. Well!"--
Carteret, though there had been no Duke of Newcastle to run athwart this fine scheme, would have had his difficulties in making her Hungarian Majesty comply. Her Majesty's great heart, incurably grieved about Silesia, is bent on having, if not restoration one day, which is a hope she never quits, at any rate some ample (cannot be too ample) equivalent elsewhere. On the Hanau scheme, united Teutschland, with England for soul to it, would have fallen vigorously on the throat of France, and made France disgorge: Lorraine, Elsass, the Three Bishoprics,--not to think of Burgundy, and earlier plunders from the Reich,--here would have been "cut and come again" for her Hungarian Majesty and everybody!--But Diana, in the shape of his Grace of Newcastle, intervenes; and all this has become chimerical and worse.
It was while Carteret's courier was gone to England and not come back, that King Louis made the above-mentioned mild, almost penitent, Declaration to the Reich, "Good people, let us have Peace; and all be as we were! I, for my share, wish to be out of it; I am for home!" And, in effect, was already home; every Frenchman in arms being, by this time, on his own side of the Rhine, as we shall presently observe.
For, the same day, July 26th, while that was going on at Frankfurt, and Carteret's return-courier was due in five days, his Britannic Majesty at Hanau had a splendid visit,--tending not towards Peace with France, but quite the opposite way. Visit from Prince Karl, with Khevenhuller and other dignitaries; doing us that honor "till the evening of the 28th." Quitting their Army,--which is now in these neighborhoods (Broglio well gone to air ahead of it; Noailles too, at the first sure sniff of it, having rushed double- quick across the Rhine),--these high Gentlemen have run over to us, for a couple of days, to "congratulate on Dettingen;" or, better still, to consult, face to face, about ulterior movements. "Follow Noailles; transfer the seat of war to France itself? These are my orders, your Majesty. Combined Invasion of Elsass: what a slash may be made into France [right handselling of your Carteret Scheme] this very year!" "Proper, in every case!" answers the Britannic Majesty; and engages to co-operate. Upon which Prince Karl--after the due reviewing, dinnering, ceremonial blaring, which was splendid to witness [Anonymous,
HUNGARIAN MAJESTY ANSWERS, IN THE DIET, THAT FRENCH DECLARATION, "MAKE PEACE, GOOD PEOPLE; I WISH TO BE OUT OF IT!"--IN AN OMINOUS MANNER.
These are fine prospects, in the French quarter, of an equivalent for Schlesien;--very fine, unless Diana intervene! Diana or not, French prospects or not, her Hungarian Majesty fastens on Bavaria with uncommon tightness of fist, now that Bavaria is swept clear; well resolved to keep Bavaria for equivalent, till better come. Exacts, by her deputy, Homage from the Population there; strict Oath of Fealty to HER; poor Kaiser protesting his uttermost, to no purpose; Kaiser's poor Printer (at Regensburg, which is in Bavaria) getting "tried and hanged" for printing such Protest! "She draughts forcibly the Bavarian militias into her Italian Army;" is high and merciless on all hands;--in a word, throttles poor Bavaria, as if to the choking of it outright. So that the very Gazetteers in foreign places gave voice, though Bavaria itself, such a grasp on the throat of it, was voiceless. Seckendorf's poor Bargain for neutrality as a Bavarian Reich-Army, her Hungarian Majesty disdains to confirm; to confirm, or even to reject; treats Seckendorf and his Bavarian Army little otherwise than as a stray dog which she has not yet shot. And truly the old Feldmarschall lies at Wembdingen, in most disconsolate moulting condition; little or nothing to live upon;--the English, generous creatures, had at one time flung him something, fancying the Armistice might be useful; but now it must be the French that do it, if anybody! [Adelung, iii. B, 204 ("22d Angust"), 206, &c.]
Hanau Conferences having failed, these things do not fail. Kaiser Karl is become tragical to think of. A spectacle of pity to Landgraf Wilhelm, to King Friedrich, and serious on-lookers;--and perhaps not of pity only, but of "pity and fear" to some of them!-- sullen Austria taking its sweet revenges, in this fashion. Readers who will look through these small chinks, may guess what a world-welter this was; and how Friedrich, gazing into phase on phase of it, as into Oracles of Fate, which to him they were, had a History, in these months, that will now never be known.