"Why not drive him out of Budweis," think the Two French Marshals, "him and whatever force can come? If those lucky Prussians would co-operate, and those unlucky Saxons, how easy were it!"--Belleisle sets off to persuade Friedrich, to persuade Saxony (and we shall see him on the route); Broglio waiting sublime, on the hither side of the Moldau, well within wind of Budweis, till Belleisle prevail, and return with said co-operation, What became of Broglio, waiting in this sublime manner, we shall also have to see; but perhaps not for a great while yet (cannot pause on such absurd phenomena yet), --though Broglio's catastrophe is itself a thing imminent; and, within some ten days of that astonishing Victory of Sahay, astonishes poor Broglio the reverse way. A man born for surprises!
In actual loss of men or of ground, the results of that Chotusitz Affair were not of decisive nature. But it had been fought with obstinacy; with great fury on the Austrian side (who, as it were, had a bet upon it ever since February 25th), Britannic George, and all the world, looking on: and, in dispiritment and discredit to the beaten party, its results were considerable. The voice of all the world, declaring through its Gazetteer Editors, "You cannot beat those Prussians!" voice confirmed by one's own sad thoughts:-- in such sounding of the rams horns round one's Jericho, there is always a strange influence (what is called panic, as if Pan or some god were in it), and one's Jericho is the apter to fall!
Among the Austrian Prisoners, there was a General Pallandt, mortally wounded too; whom Friedrich, according to custom, treated with his best humanity, though all help was hopeless to poor Pallandt. Calling one day at Pallandt's sick-couch, Friedrich was so sympathetic, humane and noble, that Pallandt was touched by it; and said, "What a pity your noble Majesty and my noble Queen should ruin one another, for a set of French intruders, who play false even to your Majesty!" "False?" Friedrich inquires farther: Pallandt, a man familiar at Court, has seen a Letter from Fleury to the Queen of Hungary, conclusive as to Fleury's good faith; will undertake, if permitted, to get his Majesty a sight of it. Friedrich permits; the Fleury letter comes; to the effect: "Make peace with us, O Queen; with your Prussian neighbor you shall make --what suits you!" Friedrich read; learned conclusively, what perhaps he had already as good as known otherwise; and drew the inference. [
Certain enough, Peace with Friedrich is now on the way; and cannot well linger:--what prospect has Austria otherwise? Its very supplies from England will be stopped. Hyndford redoubles his diligence; Britannic Majesty reiterates at Vienna: "Did not I tell you, Madam; there is no hope or possibility till these Prussians are off our hands!" To which her Hungarian Majesty, as the bargain was, now sorrowfully assents; sorrowfully, unwillingly,--and always lays the blame on his Britannic Majesty afterwards, and brings it up again as a great favor she had done HIM. "Did not I give up my invaluable Silesia, the jewel of my crown, for you, cruel Britannic Majesty with the big purse, and no heart to speak of?" This she urges always, on subsequent occasions; the high-souled Lady; reproachful of the patient, big-pursed little Gentleman, who never answers as he might, "For ME, Madam? Well--!" In short, Hyndford, Podewils and the Vienna Excellencies are busy.
Of these negotiations which go on at Breslau, and of the acres of despatchcs, English, Austrian, and other, let us not say one word. Enough that the Treaty is getting made, and rapidly,--though military offences do not quite cease; clouds of Austrian Pandours hovering about everywhere in Prince Karl's rear; pouncing down upon Prussian outposts, convoys, mostly to little purpose; hoping (what proves quite futile) they may even burn a Prussian magazine here or there. Contemptible to the Prussian soldier, though very troublesome to him. Friedrich regards the Pandour sort, with their jingling savagery, as a kind of military vermin; not conceivable a Prussian formed corps should yield to any odds of Pandour Tolpatch tagraggery. Nor does the Prussian soldier yield; though sometimes, like the mastiff galled by inroad of distracted weasels in too great quantity, he may have his own difficulties. Witness Colonel Retzow and the Magazine at Pardubitz ("daybreak, May 24th") VERSUS the infinitude of sudden Tolpatchery, bursting from the woods; rabid enough for many hours, but ineffectual, upon Pardubitz and Retzow. A distinguished Colonel this; of whom we shall hear again. Whose style of Narrative (modest, clear, grave, brief), much more, whose vigilant inexpugnable procedure on the occasion, is much to be commended to the military man. [Given in Seyfarth,
Prince Karl, fringed with Tolpatchery in this manner, but with much desertion, much dispiritment, in his main body,--the HOOPS upon him all loose, so to speak,--staggers zigzag back towards Budweis, and the Lobkowitz Party there; intending nothing more upon the Prussians;--capable now, think some NON-Prussians, of being well swept out of Budweis, and over the horizon altogether. If only his Prussian Majesty will co-operate! thinks Belleisle. "Your King of Prussia will not, M. le Marechal!" answers Broglio:--No, indeed; he has tried that trade already, M. le Marechal! think Broglio and we. The suspicions that Friedrich, so quiescent after his Chotusitz, is making Peace, are rife everywhere; especially in Broglio's head and old Fleury's; though Belleisle persists with emphasis, officially and privately, in the opposite opinion, "Husht, Messieurs!" Better go and see, however.
Belleisle does go; starts for Kuttenberg, for Dresden; his beautiful Budweis project now ready, French reinforcements streaming towards us, heart high again,--if only Friedrich and the Saxons will co-operate. Belleisle, the Two Belleisles, with Valori and Company, arrived June 2d at Kuttenberg, at the Schloss of Maleschau;--"spoke little of Chotusitz," says Stille; "and were none of them at the pains to ride to the ground." Marechal Belleisle, for the next three days, had otherwise speech of Friedrich; especially, on June 5th, a remarkable Dialogue. "Won't your Majesty co-operate?" "Alas, Monseigneur de Belleisle--" How gladly would we give this last Dialogue of Friedrich's and Belleisle's, one of the most ticklish conceivable: but there is not anywhere the least record of it that can be called authentic;--and we learn only that Friedrich, with considerable distinctness, gave him to know, "clearly" (say all the Books, except Friedrich's own), that co-operation was henceforth a thing of the preter-pluperfect tense. "All that I ever wanted, more than I ever demanded, Austria now offers; can any one blame me that I close such a business as ours has all along been, on such terms as these now offered me are?"
It is said, and is likely enough, the Pallandt-Fleury Letter came up; as probably the MORAVIAN FORAY, and various Broglio passages, would, in the train of said Letter. To all which, and to the inexorable painful corollary, Belleisle, in his high lean way, would listen with a stern grandiose composure. But the rumors add, On coming out into the Anteroom, dialogue and sentence now done, Monseigneur de Belleisle tore the peruke from his head; and stamping on it, was heard to say volcanically, "That cursed parson,--CE MAUDIT CALOTTE [old Fleury],--has ruined everything!" Perhaps it is not true? If true,--the prompt valets would quickly replace Monseigneur's wig; chasing his long strides; and silence, in so dignified a man, would cloak whatever emotions there were. [Adelung, iii. A, 154; &c. &c.