Marriage to Sophie Dorothee, 28th November, 1706.
A little Prince, born 23d November, 1707, died in six months. Then came, l. FREDERIKA SOPHIE WILHELMINA, ultimately Margravine of Baireuth, after strange adventures in the marriage-treaty way. Wrote her
After Wilhelmina in the Family series came a second Prince, who died in the eleventh month. Then, 24th January, 1712, 2. FRIEDRICH.
After whom (1713) a little Princess, who died in few months. And then, 3. FREDERIKA LOUISA, born 28th September, 1714; age now about nine. Margravine of Anspach, 30th May, 1729; Widow 1757. Her one Son, born 1736, was the LADY-CRAVEN'S Anspach. Frederika Louisa died 4th February, 1734. 4. PHILIPPINA CHARLOTTE, born 13th of March, 1716; became Duchess of Brunswick (her Husband was Eldest Brother of the "Prince Ferdinand" so famous in England in the Seven-Years War); her Son was the Duke who invaded France in 1792, and was tragically hurled to ruin in the Battle of Jena, 1806. The Mother lived till 1801; Widow since 1780.
After whom, in 1717, again a little Prince, who died within two years (our Fritz then seven,--probably the first time Death ever came before him, practically into his little thoughts in this world): then, 5. SOPHIE DOROTHEE MARIA, born 25th January, 1719; Margravine of Schwedt, 1734 (eldest Magraf of Schwedt, mentioned above as a comrade of the Crown-Prince). Her life not very happy; she died 1765. Left no son (Brother-in-law succeeded, last of the Schwedt MARGRAVES): her Daughter, wedded to Prince Friedrich Eugen, a Prussian Officer, Cadet of Wurtemberg and ultimately Heir there, is Ancestress of the Wurtemberg Sovereignties that now are, and also (by one of HER daughters married to Paul of Russia) of all the Czar kindred of our time. [Preuss, iv. 278; Erman,
Treaty of Double-Marriage is ready for signing, once the needful Parliamentary preludings are gone through; Treaty is signed, thinks Wilhelmina,--forgetting the distance between cup and lip!-- As to signing, or even to burning, and giving up the thought of signing, alas, how far are we yet from that! Imperial spectre-huntings and the politics of most European Cabinets will connect themselves with that; and send it wandering wide enough,-- lost in such a jungle of intrigues, pettifoggings, treacheries, diplomacies domestic and foreign, as the course of true-love never got entangled in before.
The whole of which extensive Cabinet operations, covering square miles of paper at this moment,--having nevertheless, after ten years of effort, ended in absolute zero,--were of no worth even to the managers of them; and are of less than none to any mortal now or henceforth. So that the method of treating them becomes a problem to History. To pitch them utterly out of window, and out of memory, never to be mentioned in human speech again: this is the manifest prompting of Nature;--and this, were not our poor Crown-Prince and one or two others involved in them, would be our ready and thrice-joyful course. Surely the so-called "Politics of Europe" in that day are a thing this Editor would otherwise with his whole soul, forget to all eternity! "Putrid fermentation," ending, after the endurance of much mal-odor, in mere zero to you and to every one, even to the rotting bodies themselves:--is there any wise Editor that would connect himself with that? These are the fields of History which are to be, so soon as humanly possible, SUPPRESSED; which only Mephistopheles, or the bad Genius of Mankind, can contemplate with pleasure.
Let us strive to touch lightly the chief summits, here and there, of that intricate, most empty, mournful Business,--which was really once a Fact in practical Europe, not the mere nightmare of an Attorney's Dream;--and indicate, so far as indispensable, how the young Friedrich, Friedrich's Sister, Father, Mother, were tribulated, almost heart-broken and done to death, by means of it.