His countenance gay, his brow clear, with a flashing smile he greets the people. He brings news of victory--complete, assured victory.
Like the first courier, he dashed on to the castle, to give his dispatches to the queen and the ministers. The people were drunk with joy. The equipages of the nobles rolled by. Every one whose rank gave him the privilege wished to offer his personal congratulations to the queen.
And now in the Konigstrasse was seen a venerable procession. The magistrates of Berlin--in front the burgomasters with their long periwigs and golden chains, behind them the worthy city council--all hastened to the castle to offer congratulations in the name of the city.
The crowd drew back respectfully before the worthy city fathers, and opened a path for them, then fixed their eyes again upon the balcony where Minister Her/.berg again appeared, and called for silence.
He will give us the news of the second courier. The victory is absolute. The Russians completely defeated. They had retreated to Kunersdorf. In this village they proposed to defend themselves. But the Prussians were unceasingly pressing upon them. Seven redoubts, Kirchhof, Spitzberg, and one hundred and eighty-six cannon had been taken. The enemy had suffered a monstrous loss, and was in the greatest confusion. The fate of the day seemed conclusive. This was owing to the heroic courage of the army, whom neither the blazing heat of the sun nor the unexampled slaughter could for a moment restrain. At six o'clock, when the king sent off this second courier, the enemy had retreated behind his last intrenchments, and taken refuge at Gudenberg. [Footnote: Frederick the Great.-- Thiebault]
A loud hurrah broke from the people as Herzberg finished and left the balcony. Now there was no room for doubt. The enemy was overwhelmed and had fled to his last intrenchment. Would the king leave him unmolested, and would he not still drive the hated enemy further?
While groups of men were assembled here and there, discussing these weighty questions, and others, intoxicated, drunk with joy at this great victory over their hereditary enemy, were making eloquent addresses to the people, a third courier appeared in sight.
Breathless with expectation and anxiety, they would not give him time to reach the castle. They must--they would know the news he brings. There should be no delay, no temporizing, no mysteries. The people were one great family. They awaited the message of their father. They demanded news of their distant sons and brothers.