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After having given you a short account of the civil, political, & military Constitution of Silesia, it will be proper to say something of its administration in ecclesiastical concerns; an object somewhat complicated in a province the inhabitants of which are divided with so near an equality of numbers into Roman catholics and protestants. I have in my former letters already given you a...
On the 7th: of this month I wrote informing you that I had withdrawn from Amsterdam all the funds I had there and remitted to Mr King in London fourteen hundred pounds sterling for which I authorised you to draw upon him and employ for me, with the usual commission—I left the mode of employment to your own vigilance and discretion, excluding only to our friends of the Union in which under...
The object of this letter will be to give you an idea of the political Constitution of the province of Silesia. By the word Constitution I do not here understand what commonly goes by that name in our Country. The supreme power in this as in most the other Prussian provinces, is in the hands of a single person. It is a simple monarchy. But it is governed by permanent laws, with regular forms,...
I last weak informed you that I had withdrawn from Amsterdam all the stocks I held there, and had remitted to Mr. King, in London fourteen hundred pounds sterling, for which I authorised you to draw, and requested you to place the proceeds in the most advantageous manner, but not in any institution or fund depending upon our national Union; for the generality of our Countrymen are so far from...
The burthens, to which I referred at the close of my last letter, & to which the inhabitants of Silesia are subjected under the Prussian Government are. 1. The compulsory obligation of serving the king as soldiers. 2. The obligation of giving quarters to the troops—and 3. Of performing personal labor, & furnishing horses for the king’s use, that of his army, & of his civil officers at...
I received only three days ago your N: 22. dated the 6th: of December, and containing the melancholy tidings of the death of our unhappy brother at New York. I had been informed of it two days earlier by a letter from my excellent friend Mr Murray at the Hague, who had seen an account of it in a New York Gazette.—Of the Situation in which he has left his wife and children you say nothing, but...
The most important change in the internal condition of Silesia, which followed its conquest by the king of Prussia, proceeds from the precautions which he found necessary to secure it. Under the Austrian Government, there had been no strongly fortified places to bar the progress of an invader & not more than two thousand men garrisoned within the province in time of peace. You have seen by...
As my purpose is only to give you the great & general outlines of the Silesian history, with a special view to show the origin of the conquest, which made it a Prussian province, I shall merely, to complete the chronological series of its Austrians sovereigns observe to you, that the Emperor Leopold 1. at his death in 1705 was succeeded by his eldest son, Joseph. 1 who dying in 1711, made way...
In my last letter, by a halfline of postscript, I told you that peace between the Austrians & French was signed. I wrote this upon information I had received just before I closed my letter, & although I had reason to believe it authentic, it has since proved erroneous. In wishing to give the latest news, you know how often we are liable to give groundless humours for facts, & therefore it is...
The transfer of Silesia from the Bohemian to the Hungarian dominions which as I have before informed you was the result of the Hussite wars, complicated with a disputed succession to the crowns of both those kingdoms, was followed by much more important changes in the condition of the inhabitants, than had been produced by the preceeding revolutions. The numerous petty princes, who had been...
Just as I enclosed my last letter to you, I had yet the opportunity to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 21. dated October. 25.—But its contents claimed further notice from me, which I had then neither time, nor room to bestow. I am sensible that by being removed from the turbulent & disgusting Scene of perpetual Scene electioneering, I am spared many a detail of vexation, which I should...
I suppose you flatter yourself, that having more than three months ago got safely out of Silesia, you are to hear nothing further about it, but indeed I shall not let you off so cheap. There still remains a very short geographical, statistical, & historical account of this interesting province, which I feel it my duty to write—Whether you will conceive it your’s to read it, I need not enquire....
I had been almost three months without receiving a line from you, or from any other of my correspondents in America; and although upon coolly considering circumstances I was sensible that this was the natural fruit of my own neglect of writing during the last Winter, yet as one’s feelings never make the allowances which sober reason requires, I began to think it strange to be so long without...
I continue to number my letters, although the series containing our Silesian tour is closed, so that untill our return to Berlin, you may know whether you receive all those I write—At Dresden from which my last to you was dated, we spent six days, in the course of which I renewed my acquaintance with the picture gallery, made an excursion one afternoon to Tharandt, through the valley of...
After a tour of nearly four weeks, in the course of which we have visited most of the places worthy of remark in the province of lower Silesia, we are once more here, upon our return home, which we concluded to take through Dresden & Leipzig—In my former letters from this place, you have seen how much we were pleased with it, & it is with no small satisfaction that we have now an opportunity...
Before we left Berlin to come upon this tour, we were advised not to pass through Breslau at all. It was said to be a large old city, resembling all other great cities, & containing nothing that deserved the attention of travellers. We had therefore not put it down upon the original list of our route. But when we found ourselves in the course of our excursion within a few miles of it, we...
When I closed my last letter to you yesterday morning at 2 o’clock, in Wünschelberg, from the appearance of the weather I had very little expectation of seeing the sun at the summit of the Heuschauer. About three however I sat out accompanied by my guide, with his lanthern in his hand, for it was still dark as midnight. For two hours & a half I went constantly ascending, excepting one, or two...
Yesterday morning early we left Schweidnitz, & came seven german miles, through the towns of Reichenbach, Frankenstein & Wertha, to this place—Reichenbach is chiefly remarkable for being the place where the last treaty between Austria & Prussia was concluded, and for a new Lutheran church, the architecture of which is at once the most simple & elegant of any similar building that I ever...
The shortness of my paper, & of my time yesterday abridged my discription of the natural ruins at Adersback, one of the most curious objects we have yet viewed upon this journey. As I was closing my letter, the king & queen passed under our windows, on their way to Fürstenstein. There, a double entertainment combining the fashionable amusements of antient & modern times, a carousel & a...
From the cloister at Grüssau (the day before yesterday) we returned to dine with Mr Ruck at Landeshut—It was a formal dinner of thirty persons according to the fashion of the country; we sat down soon after one, & rose from table just before six. The whole of this time is employed in eating; for the ladies & gentlemen rose together, & there was little wine drank. But as only one dish is served...
Upon our arrival here, I hastened immediately to deliver a letter I had for a clergyman of the place, Mr Hoffman. Unfortunately for us he was obliged to go early yesterday morning to Hirschberg. He requested however his friend Mr Frideric to show us the objects deserving a stranger’s curiosity here, which he has accordingly done. They consist principally of linen manufacturies of various...
Since our return to this place we have indulged ourselves with a few days of rest. The morning after we came back, I went over the lutheran church, which is the handsomest building in the town, & makes a conspicuous figure in all the views from the neighbouring hills. It is built in the shape of a cross, painted white, & roofed with red tile. These colours shew to great advantage here, as they...
4. August. Monday. The reason, which induces travellers, who purpose a visit to the Riesenkoppe, to pass the night before at the Hempel’s baude is, that they may ascend the mountain in the morning early enough to see the sunrise, from its summit—Such was our own intention; but when we rose at two o’clock in the morning, Louisa, found herself suffering so severe a headache, that she was obliged...
In limiting each of these letters to a single sheet of paper, I find myself often obliged to break off in the midst of my story, & to give you in different letters, fragments of our transactions in one day—My principal reason for this is to spare your patience, which I hope will last the longer for only having to undergo the trial of one sheet at a time—I now proceed therefore in the account...
At the close of my last letter I left you, in a cool refreshing shade, in the view of the Kockelfall, from which we proceeded the same evening to this inn—It was, as you may suppose, a fatiguing day; though not so much so, as one or two we have gone through since, & several, which still await us—This village in one respect resembles an American country, more than any other spot I have seen in...
If your map of Silesia is a good one, the spot from which I date this will be marked upon it. If not you must make a point about half way between Hirschberg, & the Riesen gebirge , & you will hit the identical krestcham , or inn, from which I write. It is the first moment I have had for the purpose since I closed my last to you—We were told before we left Berlin, that the tour of these...
The dimensions of my paper compelled me to break off my last letter before I had finished giving you an account of all we had seen the forenoon we stayed at Bunzlau. Yet I had little more to say; for our visit at the orphan house, which is at the same time a public school, scarcely deserves mentioning. We saw there nothing but a chapel & a dining hall, in which there were about thirty boys at...
Yesterday morning early we took our departure from Freystadt, & came to this place; a distance of eight german miles; five of which are in single stage from Sprotau here. The face of the country has visibly & greatly improved as we came along; & although we still had to wade through miles of sands more, or less deep, we were frequently relieved by patches of good roads, & by beautiful fields...
As I have stipulated that you shall peruse none of my letters written upon this tour, but with your map in hand, I need not tell you perhaps that this is the first town we have reached after entering upon the borders of Silesia. Its distance from Frankfort is ten German miles—We left that place yesterday at one in the afternoon, & experienced again we had done more than once before how...
As I have bespoke your company, upon our journey into Silesia, I begin this letter at our first resting station from Berlin. Hitherto we have indeed seen little more than the usual Brandenburg sands, & perhaps you will find our tour as tiresome as we have found it ourselves—I cannot promise you an amusing journey, though I hope it will prove so to us; & if at the sight of this my first letter...