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TO dull town, perhaps, in all Europe is many, that the three ladies who have to
parks than Potsdam. Let your eyes wan- mate in order to support Frederic's crown der wherever you please_down the famous none other than Maria Theresa, terraces of Sans Souci, erewhile a royal Empress of Austria, Catherine, Empress of hermit's retreat, or over the woodlands of Russia, and the Marquise de Pompadour, Babelsberg, which the present Emperor the very three who had labored most perplanted when a younger son, or in the sistently to thwart his purposes. In strict cool glades of Glienicke, his brother Karl's truth Frederic's resentment had taken, as most tasteful domain, or across the wa- our readers know, a very different directers skirting the Marmor Palais, where a tion at the time he built the Neue Palais, young mother was but lately seen show- to express in stone his belief in lasting ing her baby to his hoary great-grand peace—the same year (be it said in parenfather, or (to leave several other pretty thesis) which saw George Washington spots unmentioned) from the Pfingot- calmly planning a drainage of the Dismal berge over the goodly expanse of water Swamp, in full assurance (soon to be deformed by the river Havel: everywhere stroyed) that nothing would occur to tear gardens are joined to gardens and parks him from the pure domestic joys of Mount to parks. All breathes peace and rest from Vernon. toil, and great are the numbers of Berlin In this his present summer residence families that resort thither on Sundays, was Prince Frederic William of Prussia freely admitted to the enjoyment of pure born October 18, 1831. His grandfather, air, and to the elevating effect of centen- third of that name, was then reigning. nial trees and fine works of art.
His uncle ascended the throne nine years Two palaces also belong to royalty at later, under the name of Frederic WillPotsdam. One inside the town, the other iam IV. To him no children were born, at the extreme end of the Sans Souci Gar- so that the crown eventually devolved dens. This latter, called the Neue Palais, upon William I., King of Prussia since is now the residence during the summer 1860, and Emperor of Germany since 1871, months of the heir - apparent, who has our Frederic William's father. Born undevoted much time and trouble to the der expectations of kingship, his boyembellishment of its surroundings. In hood was allowed, nevertheless, to expand side, its chilling showy apartments have in the genuine unfettered country life of resisted in vain the warm and tender in- Babelsberg, with every tree and shrub of fluences of a family life so blessed, so com- which he has, so to say, grown up in intiplete and happy in all its bearings, as to macy. The house, which thousands of suffuse with gentle sweetness the pomp Americans have visited, is of small diand circumstance of regal surroundings. mensions, but erected with that exquisite
The Neue Palais was the work of Fred- adaptation to locality which only "Gotheric the Great soon after the close of ic" architecture seems capable of effecting. the Seven Years' War. Did he say it. If there be a special turn of the river, or a or was the dictum astutely fathered on sweep of trees which the eye would love him? but the story goes that he declared to behold, the architect has it in his power he would show the world that he had yet so to shape and turn his rooms and orielsome money over. It is a grand rococo windows as exactly to place that particustructure, surmounted by a royal crown, lar view within reach. Who has not deand supported gracefully by three slightly plored the square palazzo cumbering like draped female figures high up in the air. an incubus the loveliest of the Borromean Of course those bronze figures represent Islands ? Let the Renaissance build her the three Graces bearing the crown of one palaces in streets and squares, but leave us who loved the Muses, and whose writing- the “Gothic” homestead for tasteful landtable the Adorante of Lysippus never left. scape use. However, no act of that sarcastic sover- To the house of Babelsberg the boy eign has been known to escape a com- prince was fervently attached. On his panion legend of some kind or other. first visit to England in 1851, to which Thus it was loudly asserted at the time, attention will be drawn hereafter, a counand is believed at the present day by tryman only a few years older than bim
self was appointed to act as his compan- | told upon him mightily. However, in the ion whilst viewing the sights of London. midst of his unrestrained expressions of An interruption of a few days had taken admiration he suddenly turned to his complace, during which, at Queen Victoria's panion, and asked him whether he had ever invitation, he had visited Windsor Castle. seen Babelsberg. “No? Then you should The delight produced upon his mind was see it as soon as possible; for it is so much exquisite, transcendent ; he roamed about finer than Windsor.” Those words will with ever-increasing zest among the ves- never be forgotten by him to whom they tiges of centuries left on that most fasci- were addressed; for surely a youth can nating spot; its grandeur and stateliness not go far wrong who prefers his abode and his own little snuggery to all the fin- | to a family tradition the boy was also early est splendors wherever found; nor is it set to do handiwork. He chose carpenterpossible that the home in which such a ing and book-binding, and went through a sentiment has grown to maturity should regular course of each under professional not be pure, and filled with noble and high teachers. purposes.
His schooling was finally intrusted to Such, indeed, was the case. Everybody Ernst Curtius, a native of that famous knows the father's career, which to-day ancient republic of Lübeck, and well already stamps him with a legendary known to our readers as the historian of type like his predecessor Charlemagne. Greece. The mother's attention had been The mother is far less known out of her first drawn toward him by a public leccountry. Yet she deserves to be; for, in- ture he gave treating of the Acropolis of deed, more labor, conscientiously and right Athens. There was something about him heroically undertaken, has rarely been con- that fixed her attention. In him the centrated into one life. In Augusta of Athenian mind seemed, as it were, to be Saxe-Weimar, the pupil of Goethe and reproduced. Imbued with an exquisite the friend of Alexander von Humboldt, sense of the beautiful, he treats of the fine beauty and talents, tastes and longings, arts, of history, and mythology, even of rank and position, have all and ever been grammar or topography, with a bewitchcounted as dust in the balance when com- ing elegance. His influence, paramount pared to the regal duty of filling the post at the present day in the Berlin Universito which Providence had called her. No ty, is visible in many traits of character second of each waking hour is allowed to of his high-born pupil, which made the pass without a straining of every nerve in latter, at the age of twenty, what a shy the fulfillment of such tasks as her ever-old gentleman at Bonn once called in priactive brain suggests, all tending to the vate conversation, “the delight of manone object of her life, viz., to increase the kind." patrimony of respect and loyalty which From Curtius's hands the Prince, in obehas been accumulating in favor of the dience to another tradition of his family, family into which her destiny has thrown entered the First Regiment of Foot-Guards, her. Great was the care she bestowed stationed at Potsdam. His indefatigable upon choosing governesses and masters instructor, Major Von der Groeben, exfor her son's earliest years. In obedience empted him from no duty that any other lieutenant had to perform; his recruits | Prussia, Rhineland, if not disaffected, was must needs be as completely drilled and as yet far from feeling at that time in hearty diligently crammed as any other; a strict unison with the state to which, on the control was carried out by the command-break-down of Bonaparte's power, its par
er-in-chief of the guards, who was respon- | ticles, disjointed from time immemorial, sible for the work done.
had been firmly welded. As his parents The choice of Bonn for his life at col- chose Coblenz for their own residence, lege was an excellent one. A future sov- making that town for the time a sort of ereign ought, it is believed, to become in- second capital of the kingdom, so was he timate with every portion of the country. brought up in the Rhenish university. One of the most interesting provinces of There he lived, a merry youth with the young, and a genial, instruction-seeking The present writer recollects his addressstudent with the old. If his arrival had ing an urchin who suddenly emerged been looked upon with some mistrust or from a side lane with, “How now, boy? dislike by the common people, to whom Surely you had not your arm in a sling the name of Prussian was still a rebuke, when I saw you last ?" The lad stared he quickly vanquished that estrangement and then grinned, blubbered something without any artifice of kingcraft beyond about having had a fall on the ice and that of having an honest, civil word for mother insisting upon his arm being tied everybody and-remembering everybody. I up, as if that was any use, and ran away,