He gave the card to the Princess, who embraced and kissed him for it." [Vehse,
VOLTAIRE TO FRIEDRICH (a fortnight after).
"I must tell you that I have felt, in these late days, in spite of all my past caprices, how much I am attached to your Majesty and to your House. Madam the Duchess of Wurtemberg having had, like so many others, the weakness to believe that health is to be found at Lausanne, and that Dr. Tissot gives it if one pay him, has, as you know, made the journey to Lausanne; and I, who am more veritably ill than she, and than all the Princesses who have taken Tissot for an AEsculapius, had not the strength to leave my home. Madam of Wurtemberg, apprised of all the feelings that still live in me for the memory of Madam the Margravine of Baireuth her Mother, has deigned to visit my hermitage, and pass two days with us. I should have recognized her, even without warning; she has the turn of her Mother's face with your eyes.
"You Hero-people who govern the world don't allow yourselves to be subdued by feelings; you have them all the same as we, but you maintain your decorum. We other petty mortals yield to all our impressions: I set myself to cry, in speaking to her of you and of Madam the Princess her Mother; and she too, though she is Niece of the first Captain in Europe, could not restrain her tears. It appears to me, that she has the talent (ESPRIT) and the graces of your House; and that especially she is more attached to you than to her Husband [I should think so!]. She returns, I believe, to Baireuth,--
--[No Mother, no Father there now: foolish Uncle of Anspath died long ago, "3d August, 1757:" Aunt Dowager of Anspach gone to Erlangen, I hope, to Feuchtwang, Schwabach or Schwaningen, or some Widow's-Mansion "WITTWENSITZ" of her own; [Lived, finally at Schwaningen, in sight of such vicissitudes and follies round her, till "4th February, 1784" (Rodenbeck, iii. 304).] reigning Son, with his French-Actress equipments, being of questionable figure],--
--"returns, I believe, to Baireuth; where she will find another Princess of a different sort; I mean Mademoiselle Clairon, who cultivates Natural History, and is Lady Philosopher to Monseigneur the Margraf,"--high-rouged Tragedy-Queen, rather tyrannous upon him, they say: a young man destined to adorn Hammersmith by and by, and not go a good road.
... "I renounce my beautiful hopes of seeing the Mahometans driven out of Europe, and Athens become again the Seat of the Muses. Neither you nor the Kaiser are"--are inclined in the Crusading way at all. ... "The old sick man of Ferney is always at the feet of your Majesty; he feels very sorry that he cannot talk of you farther with Madam the Duchess of Wurtemberg, who adores you.-- LE VIEUX MALADE." [
To which Friedrich makes answer: "If it is forevermore forbidden me to see you again, I am not the less glad that the Duchess of Wurtemberg has seen you. I should certainly have mixed my tears with yours, had I been present at that touching scene! Be it weakness, be it excess of regard, I have built for her lost Mother, what Cicero projected for his Tullia, a TEMPLE OF FRIENDSHIP: her Statue occupies the background, and on each pillar stands a mask (MASCARON) containing the Bust of some Hero in Friendship: I send you the drawing of it." ["Potsdam, 24th October, 1773:"
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