FRIEDRICH (June 7th; before his first crossing Elbe: Henri at Sagan; he at Schlettau, scanning the waste of fatal possibilities). ... Embarrassing? Not a doubt, of that! "I own, the circumstances both of us are in are like to turn my head, three or four times a day." Loudon aiming for Neisse, don't you think? Fouquet all in the wrong.--"One has nothing for it but to watch where the likelihood of the biggest misfortune is, and to run thither with one's whole strength."
henri ... "I confess I am in great apprehension for Colberg:"-- shall one make thither; think you? Russians, 8,000 as the first instalment of them, have ARRIVED; got to Posen under Fermor, June 1st:--so the Commandant of Glogau writes me (see enclosed).
FRIEDRICH (June 9th). Commandant of Glogau writes impossibilities: Russians are not on march yet, nor will be for above a week.
"I cross Elbe, the 15th. I am compelled to undertake something of decisive nature, and leave the rest to chance. For desperate disorders desperate remedies. My bed is not one of roses. Heaven aid us: for human prudence finds itself fall short in situations so cruel and desperate as ours." [Schoning, ii. 313 ("Meissen Camp, 7th June, 1760"); ib. ii. 317 ("9th June").]
HENRI. Hm, hm, ha (Nothing but carefully collected rumors, and wire-drawn auguries from them, on the part of Henri; very intense inspection of the chicken-bowels,--hardly ever without a shake of the head).
FRIEDRICH (June 26th; has heard of the Fouquet disaster). ... "Yesterday my heart was torn to pieces [news of Landshut, Fouquet's downfall there], and I felt too sad to be in a state for writing you a sensible Letter; but to-day, when I have come to myself a little again, I will send you my reflections. After what has happened to Fouquet, it is certain Loudon can have no other design but on Breslau [he designs Glatz first of all]: it will be the grand point, therefore, especially if the Russians too are bending thither, to save that Capital of Silesia. Surely the Turks must be in motion:--if so, we are saved; if not so, we are lost! To-day I have taken this Camp of Dobritz, in order to be more collected, and in condition to fight well, should occasion rise,--and in case all this that is said and written to me about the Turks is TRUE [which nothing of it was], to be able to profit by it when the time comes." [Schoning, ii. 341 ("Gross-Dobritz, 26th June, 1760").]
HENRI (simultaneously, June 26th: Henri is forward from Sagan, through Frankfurt, and got settled at Landsberg, where he remains through the rest of the Dialogue). ... Tottleben, with his Cossacks, scouring about, got a check from us,--nothing like enough. "By all my accounts, Soltikof, with the gross of the Russians, is marching for Posen. The other rumors and symptoms agree in indicating a separate Corps, under Fermor, who is to join Tottleben, and besiege Colberg: if both these Corps, the Colberg and the Posen one, act, in concert, my embarrassment will be extreme. ... I have just had news of what has befallen General Fouquet. Before this stroke, your affairs were desperate enough; now I see but too well what we have to look for." [Ib. ii. 339 ("Landsberg, 26th June, 1760").] (How comforting!)
FRIEDRICH. "Would to God your prayers for the swift capture of Dresden had been heard; but unfortunately I must tell you, this stroke has failed me. ... Dresden has been reduced to ashes, third part of the Altstadt lying burnt;--contrary to my intentions: my orders were, To spare the City, and play the Artillery against the works. My Minister Graf von Finck will have told you what occasioned its being set on fire." [Schoning, ii. 361 ("2d-3d July").]