The Project Gutenberg eBook of The Thirty Years War — Volume 03

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Title: The Thirty Years War — Volume 03

Author: Friedrich Schiller

Release date: October 1, 2004 [eBook #6772]
Most recently updated: December 30, 2020

Language: English

Credits: This eBook was produced by David Widger


This eBook was produced by David Widger,



Translated from the German




The glorious battle of Leipzig effected a great change in the conduct of Gustavus Adolphus, as well as in the opinion which both friends and foes entertained of him. Successfully had he confronted the greatest general of the age, and had matched the strength of his tactics and the courage of his Swedes against the elite of the imperial army, the most experienced troops in Europe. From this moment he felt a firm confidence in his own powers—self-confidence has always been the parent of great actions. In all his subsequent operations more boldness and decision are observable; greater determination, even amidst the most unfavourable circumstances, a more lofty tone towards his adversaries, a more dignified bearing towards his allies, and even in his clemency, something of the forbearance of a conqueror. His natural courage was farther heightened by the pious ardour of his imagination. He saw in his own cause that of heaven, and in the defeat of Tilly beheld the decisive interference of Providence against his enemies, and in himself the instrument of divine vengeance. Leaving his crown and his country far behind, he advanced on the wings of victory into the heart of Germany, which for centuries had seen no foreign conqueror within its bosom. The warlike spirit of its inhabitants, the vigilance of its numerous princes, the artful confederation of its states, the number of its strong castles, its many and broad rivers, had long restrained the ambition of its neighbours; and frequently as its extensive frontier had been attacked, its interior had been free from hostile invasion. The Empire had hitherto enjoyed the equivocal privilege of being its own enemy, though invincible from without. Even now, it was merely the disunion of its members, and the intolerance of religious zeal, that paved the way for the Swedish invader. The bond of union between the states, which alone had rendered the Empire invincible, was now dissolved; and Gustavus derived from Germany itself the power by which he subdued it. With as much courage as prudence, he availed himself of all that the favourable moment afforded; and equally at home in the cabinet and the field, he tore asunder the web of the artful policy, with as much ease, as he shattered walls with the thunder of his cannon. Uninterruptedly he pursued his conquests from one end of Germany to the other, without breaking the line of posts which commanded a secure retreat at any moment; and whether on the banks of the Rhine, or at the mouth of the Lech, alike maintaining his communication with his hereditary dominions.

The consternation of the Emperor and the League at Tilly's defeat at Leipzig, was scarcely greater than the surprise and embarrassment of the allies of the King of Sweden at his unexpected success. It was beyond both their expectations and their wishes. Annihilated in a moment was that formidable army which, while it checked his progress and set bounds to his ambition, rendered him in some measure dependent on themselves. He now stood in the heart of Germany, alone, without a rival or without an adversary who was a match for him. Nothing could stop his progress, or check his pretensions, if the intoxication of success should tempt him to abuse his victory. If formerly they had dreaded the Emperor's irresistible power, there was no less cause now to fear every thing for the Empire, from the violence of a foreign conqueror, and for the Catholic Church, from the religious zeal of a Protestant king. The distrust and jealousy of some of the combined powers, which a stronger fear of the Emperor had for a time repressed, now revived; and scarcely had Gustavus Adolphus merited, by his courage and success, their confidence, when they began covertly to circumvent all his plans. Through a continual struggle with the arts of enemies, and the distrust of his own allies, must his victories henceforth be won; yet resolution, penetration, and prudence made their way through all impediments. But while his success excited the jealousy of his more powerful allies, France and Saxony, it gave courage to the weaker, and emboldened them openly to declare their sentiments and join his party. Those who could neither vie with Gustavus Adolphus in importance, nor suffer from his ambition, expected the more from the magnanimity of their powerful ally, who enriched them with the spoils of their enemies, and protected them against the oppression of their stronger neighbours. His strength covered their weakness, and, inconsiderable in themselves, they acquired weight and influence from their union with the Swedish hero. This was the case with most of the free cities, and particularly with the weaker Protestant states. It was these that introduced the king into the heart of Germany; these covered his rear, supplied his troops with necessaries, received them into their fortresses, while they exposed their own lives in his battles. His prudent regard to their national pride, his popular deportment, some brilliant acts of justice, and his respect for the laws, were so many ties by which he bound the German Protestants to his cause; while the crying atrocities of the Imperialists, the Spaniards, and the troops of Lorraine, powerfully contributed to set his own conduct and that of his army in a favourable light.

If Gustavus Adolphus owed his success chiefly to his own genius, at the same time, it must be owned, he was greatly favoured by fortune and by circumstances. Two great advantages gave him a decided superiority over the enemy. While he removed the scene of war into the lands of the League, drew their youth as recruits, enriched himself with booty, and used the revenues of their fugitive princes as his own, he at once took from the enemy the means of effectual resistance, and maintained an expensive war with little cost to himself. And, moreover, while his opponents, the princes of the League, divided among themselves, and governed by different and often conflicting interests, acted without unanimity, and therefore without energy; while their generals were deficient in authority, their troops in obedience, the operations of their scattered armies without concert; while the general was separated from the lawgiver and the statesman; these several functions were united in Gustavus Adolphus, the only source from which authority flowed, the sole object to which the eye of the warrior turned; the soul of his party, the inventor as well as the executor of his plans. In him, therefore, the Protestants had a centre of unity and harmony, which was altogether wanting to their opponents. No wonder, then, if favoured by such advantages, at the head of such an army, with such a genius to direct it, and guided by such political prudence, Gustavus Adolphus was irresistible.

With the sword in one hand, and mercy in the other, he traversed Germany as a conqueror, a lawgiver, and a judge, in as short a time almost as the tourist of pleasure. The keys of towns and fortresses were delivered to him, as if to the native sovereign. No fortress was inaccessible; no river checked his victorious career. He conquered by the very terror of his name. The Swedish standards were planted along the whole stream of the Maine: the Lower Palatinate was free, the troops of Spain and Lorraine had fled across the Rhine and the Moselle. The Swedes and Hessians poured like a torrent into the territories of Mentz, of Wurtzburg, and Bamberg, and three fugitive bishops, at a distance from their sees, suffered dearly for their unfortunate attachment to the Emperor. It was now the turn for Maximilian, the leader of the League, to feel in his own dominions the miseries he had inflicted upon others. Neither the terrible fate of his allies, nor the peaceful overtures of Gustavus, who, in the midst of conquest, ever held out the hand of friendship, could conquer the obstinacy of this prince. The torrent of war now poured into Bavaria. Like the banks of the Rhine, those of the Lecke and the Donau were crowded with Swedish troops. Creeping into his fortresses, the defeated Elector abandoned to the ravages of the foe his dominions, hitherto unscathed by war, and on which the bigoted violence of the Bavarians seemed to invite retaliation. Munich itself opened its gates to the invincible monarch, and the fugitive Palatine, Frederick V., in the forsaken residence of his rival, consoled himself for a time for the loss of his dominions.

While Gustavus Adolphus was extending his conquests in the south, his generals and allies were gaining similar triumphs in the other provinces. Lower Saxony shook off the yoke of Austria, the enemy abandoned Mecklenburg, and the imperial garrisons retired from the banks of the Weser and the Elbe. In Westphalia and the Upper Rhine, William, Landgrave of Hesse, rendered himself formidable; the Duke of Weimar in Thuringia, and the French in the Electorate of Treves; while to the eastward the whole kingdom of Bohemia was conquered by the Saxons. The Turks were preparing to attack Hungary, and in the heart of Austria a dangerous insurrection was threatened. In vain did the Emperor look around to the courts of Europe for support; in vain did he summon the Spaniards to his assistance, for the bravery of the Flemings afforded them ample employment beyond the Rhine; in vain did he call upon the Roman court and the whole church to come to his rescue. The offended Pope sported, in pompous processions and idle anathemas, with the embarrassments of Ferdinand, and instead of the desired subsidy he was shown the devastation of Mantua.

On all sides of his extensive monarchy hostile arms surrounded him. With the states of the League, now overrun by the enemy, those ramparts were thrown down, behind which Austria had so long defended herself, and the embers of war were now smouldering upon her unguarded frontiers. His most zealous allies were disarmed; Maximilian of Bavaria, his firmest support, was scarce able to defend himself. His armies, weakened by desertion and repeated defeat, and dispirited by continued misfortunes had unlearnt, under beaten generals, that warlike impetuosity which, as it is the consequence, so it is the guarantee of success. The danger was extreme, and extraordinary means alone could raise the imperial power from the degradation into which it was fallen.

The most urgent want was that of a general; and the only one from whom he could hope for the revival of his former splendour, had been removed from his command by an envious cabal. So low had the Emperor now fallen, that he was forced to make the most humiliating proposals to his injured subject and servant, and meanly to press upon the imperious Duke of Friedland the acceptance of the powers which no less meanly had been taken from him. A new spirit began from this moment to animate the expiring body of Austria; and a sudden change in the aspect of affairs bespoke the firm hand which guided them. To the absolute King of Sweden, a general equally absolute was now opposed; and one victorious hero was confronted with another. Both armies were again to engage in the doubtful struggle; and the prize of victory, already almost secured in the hands of Gustavus Adolphus, was to be the object of another and a severer trial. The storm of war gathered around Nuremberg; before its walls the hostile armies encamped; gazing on each other with dread and respect, longing for, and yet shrinking from, the moment that was to close them together in the shock of battle. The eyes of Europe turned to the scene in curiosity and alarm, while Nuremberg, in dismay, expected soon to lend its name to a more decisive battle than that of Leipzig. Suddenly the clouds broke, and the storm rolled away from Franconia, to burst upon the plains of Saxony. Near Lutzen fell the thunder that had menaced Nuremberg; the victory, half lost, was purchased by the death of the king. Fortune, which had never forsaken him in his lifetime, favoured the King of Sweden even in his death, with the rare privilege of falling in the fulness of his glory and an untarnished fame. By a timely death, his protecting genius rescued him from the inevitable fate of man—that of forgetting moderation in the intoxication of success, and justice in the plenitude of power. It may be doubted whether, had he lived longer, he would still have deserved the tears which Germany shed over his grave, or maintained his title to the admiration with which posterity regards him, as the first and only JUST conqueror that the world has produced. The untimely fall of their great leader seemed to threaten the ruin of his party; but to the Power which rules the world, no loss of a single man is irreparable. As the helm of war dropped from the hand of the falling hero, it was seized by two great statesmen, Oxenstiern and Richelieu. Destiny still pursued its relentless course, and for full sixteen years longer the flames of war blazed over the ashes of the long-forgotten king and soldier.

I may now be permitted to take a cursory retrospect of Gustavus Adolphus in his victorious career; glance at the scene in which he alone was the great actor; and then, when Austria becomes reduced to extremity by the successes of the Swedes, and by a series of disasters is driven to the most humiliating and desperate expedients, to return to the history of the Emperor.

As soon as the plan of operations had been concerted at Halle, between the King of Sweden and the Elector of Saxony; as soon as the alliance had been concluded with the neighbouring princes of Weimar and Anhalt, and preparations made for the recovery of the bishopric of Magdeburg, the king began his march into the empire. He had here no despicable foe to contend with. Within the empire, the Emperor was still powerful; throughout Franconia, Swabia, and the Palatinate, imperial garrisons were posted, with whom the possession of every place of importance must be disputed sword in hand. On the Rhine he was opposed by the Spaniards, who had overrun the territory of the banished Elector Palatine, seized all its strong places, and would everywhere dispute with him the passage over that river. On his rear was Tilly, who was fast recruiting his force, and would soon be joined by the auxiliaries from Lorraine. Every Papist presented an inveterate foe, while his connexion with France did not leave him at liberty to act with freedom against the Roman Catholics. Gustavus had foreseen all these obstacles, but at the same time the means by which they were to be overcome. The strength of the Imperialists was broken and divided among different garrisons, while he would bring against them one by one his whole united force. If he was to be opposed by the fanaticism of the Roman Catholics, and the awe in which the lesser states regarded the Emperor's power, he might depend on the active support of the Protestants, and their hatred to Austrian oppression. The ravages of the Imperialist and Spanish troops also powerfully aided him in these quarters; where the ill-treated husbandman and citizen sighed alike for a deliverer, and where the mere change of yoke seemed to promise a relief. Emissaries were despatched to gain over to the Swedish side the principal free cities, particularly Nuremberg and Frankfort. The first that lay in the king's march, and which he could not leave unoccupied in his rear, was Erfurt. Here the Protestant party among the citizens opened to him, without a blow, the gates of the town and the citadel. From the inhabitants of this, as of every important place which afterwards submitted, he exacted an oath of allegiance, while he secured its possession by a sufficient garrison. To his ally, Duke William of Weimar, he intrusted the command of an army to be raised in Thuringia. He also left his queen in Erfurt, and promised to increase its privileges. The Swedish army now crossed the Thuringian forest in two columns, by Gotha and Arnstadt, and having delivered, in its march, the county of Henneberg from the Imperialists, formed a junction on the third day near Koenigshofen, on the frontiers of Franconia.

Francis, Bishop of Wurtzburg, the bitter enemy of the Protestants, and the most zealous member of the League, was the first to feel the indignation of Gustavus Adolphus. A few threats gained for the Swedes possession of his fortress of Koenigshofen, and with it the key of the whole province. At the news of this rapid conquest, dismay seized all the Roman Catholic towns of the circle. The Bishops of Wurtzburg and Bamberg trembled in their castles; they already saw their sees tottering, their churches profaned, and their religion degraded. The malice of his enemies had circulated the most frightful representations of the persecuting spirit and the mode of warfare pursued by the Swedish king and his soldiers, which neither the repeated assurances of the king, nor the most splendid examples of humanity and toleration, ever entirely effaced. Many feared to suffer at the hands of another what in similar circumstances they were conscious of inflicting themselves. Many of the richest Roman Catholics hastened to secure by flight their property, their religion, and their persons, from the sanguinary fanaticism of the Swedes. The bishop himself set the example. In the midst of the alarm, which his bigoted zeal had caused, he abandoned his dominions, and fled to Paris, to excite, if possible, the French ministry against the common enemy of religion.

The further progress of Gustavus Adolphus in the ecclesiastical territories agreed with this brilliant commencement. Schweinfurt, and soon afterwards Wurtzburg, abandoned by their Imperial garrisons, surrendered; but Marienberg he was obliged to carry by storm. In this place, which was believed to be impregnable, the enemy had collected a large store of provisions and ammunition, all of which fell into the hands of the Swedes. The king found a valuable prize in the library of the Jesuits, which he sent to Upsal, while his soldiers found a still more agreeable one in the prelate's well-filled cellars; his treasures the bishop had in good time removed. The whole bishopric followed the example of the capital, and submitted to the Swedes. The king compelled all the bishop's subjects to swear allegiance to himself; and, in the absence of the lawful sovereign, appointed a regency, one half of whose members were Protestants. In every Roman Catholic town which Gustavus took, he opened the churches to the Protestant people, but without retaliating on the Papists the cruelties which they had practised on the former. On such only as sword in hand refused to submit, were the fearful rights of war enforced; and for the occasional acts of violence committed by a few of the more lawless soldiers, in the blind rage of the first attack, their humane leader is not justly responsible. Those who were peaceably disposed, or defenceless, were treated with mildness. It was a sacred principle of Gustavus to spare the blood of his enemies, as well as that of his own troops.

On the first news of the Swedish irruption, the Bishop of Wurtzburg, without regarding the treaty which he had entered into with the King of Sweden, had earnestly pressed the general of the League to hasten to the assistance of the bishopric. That defeated commander had, in the mean time, collected on the Weser the shattered remnant of his army, reinforced himself from the garrisons of Lower Saxony, and effected a junction in Hesse with Altringer and Fugger, who commanded under him. Again at the head of a considerable force, Tilly burned with impatience to wipe out the stain of his first defeat by a splendid victory. From his camp at Fulda, whither he had marched with his army, he earnestly requested permission from the Duke of Bavaria to give battle to Gustavus Adolphus. But, in the event of Tilly's defeat, the League had no second army to fall back upon, and Maximilian was too cautious to risk again the fate of his party on a single battle. With tears in his eyes, Tilly read the commands of his superior, which compelled him to inactivity. Thus his march to Franconia was delayed, and Gustavus Adolphus gained time to overrun the whole bishopric. It was in vain that Tilly, reinforced at Aschaffenburg by a body of 12,000 men from Lorraine, marched with an overwhelming force to the relief of Wurtzburg. The town and citadel were already in the hands of the Swedes, and Maximilian of Bavaria was generally blamed (and not without cause, perhaps) for having, by his scruples, occasioned the loss of the bishopric. Commanded to avoid a battle, Tilly contented himself with checking the farther advance of the enemy; but he could save only a few of the towns from the impetuosity of the Swedes. Baffled in an attempt to reinforce the weak garrison of Hanau, which it was highly important to the Swedes to gain, he crossed the Maine, near Seligenstadt, and took the direction of the Bergstrasse, to protect the Palatinate from the conqueror.

Tilly, however, was not the sole enemy whom Gustavus Adolphus met in Franconia, and drove before him. Charles, Duke of Lorraine, celebrated in the annals of the time for his unsteadiness of character, his vain projects, and his misfortunes, ventured to raise a weak arm against the Swedish hero, in the hope of obtaining from the Emperor the electoral dignity. Deaf to the suggestions of a rational policy, he listened only to the dictates of heated ambition; by supporting the Emperor, he exasperated France, his formidable neighbour; and in the pursuit of a visionary phantom in another country, left undefended his own dominions, which were instantly overrun by a French army. Austria willingly conceded to him, as well as to the other princes of the League, the honour of being ruined in her cause. Intoxicated with vain hopes, this prince collected a force of 17,000 men, which he proposed to lead in person against the Swedes. If these troops were deficient in discipline and courage, they were at least attractive by the splendour of their accoutrements; and however sparing they were of their prowess against the foe, they were liberal enough with it against the defenceless citizens and peasantry, whom they were summoned to defend. Against the bravery, and the formidable discipline of the Swedes this splendidly attired army, however, made no long stand. On the first advance of the Swedish cavalry a panic seized them, and they were driven without difficulty from their cantonments in Wurtzburg; the defeat of a few regiments occasioned a general rout, and the scattered remnant sought a covert from the Swedish valour in the towns beyond the Rhine. Loaded with shame and ridicule, the duke hurried home by Strasburg, too fortunate in escaping, by a submissive written apology, the indignation of his conqueror, who had first beaten him out of the field, and then called upon him to account for his hostilities. It is related upon this occasion that, in a village on the Rhine a peasant struck the horse of the duke as he rode past, exclaiming, "Haste, Sir, you must go quicker to escape the great King of Sweden!"

The example of his neighbours' misfortunes had taught the Bishop of Bamberg prudence. To avert the plundering of his territories, he made offers of peace, though these were intended only to delay the king's course till the arrival of assistance. Gustavus Adolphus, too honourable himself to suspect dishonesty in another, readily accepted the bishop's proposals, and named the conditions on which he was willing to save his territories from hostile treatment. He was the more inclined to peace, as he had no time to lose in the conquest of Bamberg, and his other designs called him to the Rhine. The rapidity with which he followed up these plans, cost him the loss of those pecuniary supplies which, by a longer residence in Franconia, he might easily have extorted from the weak and terrified bishop. This artful prelate broke off the negotiation the instant the storm of war passed away from his own territories. No sooner had Gustavus marched onwards than he threw himself under the protection of Tilly, and received the troops of the Emperor into the very towns and fortresses, which shortly before he had shown himself ready to open to the Swedes. By this stratagem, however, he only delayed for a brief interval the ruin of his bishopric. A Swedish general who had been left in Franconia, undertook to punish the perfidy of the bishop; and the ecclesiastical territory became the seat of war, and was ravaged alike by friends and foes.

The formidable presence of the Imperialists had hitherto been a check upon the Franconian States; but their retreat, and the humane conduct of the Swedish king, emboldened the nobility and other inhabitants of this circle to declare in his favour. Nuremberg joyfully committed itself to his protection; and the Franconian nobles were won to his cause by flattering proclamations, in which he condescended to apologize for his hostile appearance in the dominions. The fertility of Franconia, and the rigorous honesty of the Swedish soldiers in their dealings with the inhabitants, brought abundance to the camp of the king. The high esteem which the nobility of the circle felt for Gustavus, the respect and admiration with which they regarded his brilliant exploits, the promises of rich booty which the service of this monarch held out, greatly facilitated the recruiting of his troops; a step which was made necessary by detaching so many garrisons from the main body. At the sound of his drums, recruits flocked to his standard from all quarters.

The king had scarcely spent more time in conquering Franconia, than he would have required to cross it. He now left behind him Gustavus Horn, one of his best generals, with a force of 8,000 men, to complete and retain his conquest. He himself with his main army, reinforced by the late recruits, hastened towards the Rhine in order to secure this frontier of the empire from the Spaniards; to disarm the ecclesiastical electors, and to obtain from their fertile territories new resources for the prosecution of the war. Following the course of the Maine, he subjected, in the course of his march, Seligenstadt, Aschaffenburg, Steinheim, the whole territory on both sides of the river. The imperial garrisons seldom awaited his approach, and never attempted resistance. In the meanwhile one of his colonels had been fortunate enough to take by surprise the town and citadel of Hanau, for whose preservation Tilly had shown such anxiety. Eager to be free of the oppressive burden of the Imperialists, the Count of Hanau gladly placed himself under the milder yoke of the King of Sweden.

Gustavus Adolphus now turned his whole attention to Frankfort, for it was his constant maxim to cover his rear by the friendship and possession of the more important towns. Frankfort was among the free cities which, even from Saxony, he had endeavoured to prepare for his reception; and he now called upon it, by a summons from Offenbach, to allow him a free passage, and to admit a Swedish garrison. Willingly would this city have dispensed with the necessity of choosing between the King of Sweden and the Emperor; for, whatever party they might embrace, the inhabitants had a like reason to fear for their privileges and trade. The Emperor's vengeance would certainly fall heavily upon them, if they were in a hurry to submit to the King of Sweden, and afterwards he should prove unable to protect his adherents in Germany. But still more ruinous for them would be the displeasure of an irresistible conqueror, who, with a formidable army, was already before their gates, and who might punish their opposition by the ruin of their commerce and prosperity. In vain did their deputies plead the danger which menaced their fairs, their privileges, perhaps their constitution itself, if, by espousing the party of the Swedes, they were to incur the Emperor's displeasure. Gustavus Adolphus expressed to them his astonishment that, when the liberties of Germany and the Protestant religion were at stake, the citizens of Frankfort should talk of their annual fairs, and postpone for temporal interests the great cause of their country and their conscience. He had, he continued, in a menacing tone, found the keys of every town and fortress, from the Isle of Rugen to the Maine, and knew also where to find a key to Frankfort; the safety of Germany, and the freedom of the Protestant Church, were, he assured them, the sole objects of his invasion; conscious of the justice of his cause, he was determined not to allow any obstacle to impede his progress. "The inhabitants of Frankfort, he was well aware, wished to stretch out only a finger to him, but he must have the whole hand in order to have something to grasp." At the head of the army, he closely followed the deputies as they carried back his answer, and in order of battle awaited, near Saxenhausen, the decision of the council.

If Frankfort hesitated to submit to the Swedes, it was solely from fear of the Emperor; their own inclinations did not allow them a moment to doubt between the oppressor of Germany and its protector. The menacing preparations amidst which Gustavus Adolphus now compelled them to decide, would lessen the guilt of their revolt in the eyes of the Emperor, and by an appearance of compulsion justify the step which they willingly took. The gates were therefore opened to the King of Sweden, who marched his army through this imperial town in magnificent procession, and in admirable order. A garrison of 600 men was left in Saxenhausen; while the king himself advanced the same evening, with the rest of his army, against the town of Hoechst in Mentz, which surrendered to him before night.

While Gustavus was thus extending his conquests along the Maine, fortune crowned also the efforts of his generals and allies in the north of Germany. Rostock, Wismar, and Doemitz, the only strong places in the Duchy of Mecklenburg which still sighed under the yoke of the Imperialists, were recovered by their legitimate sovereign, the Duke John Albert, under the Swedish general, Achatius Tott. In vain did the imperial general, Wolf Count von Mansfeld, endeavour to recover from the Swedes the territories of Halberstadt, of which they had taken possession immediately upon the victory of Leipzig; he was even compelled to leave Magdeburg itself in their hands. The Swedish general, Banner, who with 8,000 men remained upon the Elbe, closely blockaded that city, and had defeated several imperial regiments which had been sent to its relief. Count Mansfeld defended it in person with great resolution; but his garrison being too weak to oppose for any length of time the numerous force of the besiegers, he was already about to surrender on conditions, when Pappenheim advanced to his assistance, and gave employment elsewhere to the Swedish arms. Magdeburg, however, or rather the wretched huts that peeped out miserably from among the ruins of that once great town, was afterwards voluntarily abandoned by the Imperialists, and immediately taken possession of by the Swedes.

Even Lower Saxony, encouraged by the progress of the king, ventured to raise its head from the disasters of the unfortunate Danish war. They held a congress at Hamburg, and resolved upon raising three regiments, which they hoped would be sufficient to free them from the oppressive garrisons of the Imperialists. The Bishop of Bremen, a relation of Gustavus Adolphus, was not content even with this; but assembled troops of his own, and terrified the unfortunate monks and priests of the neighbourhood, but was quickly compelled by the imperial general, Count Gronsfeld, to lay down his arms. Even George, Duke of Lunenburg, formerly a colonel in the Emperor's service, embraced the party of Gustavus, for whom he raised several regiments, and by occupying the attention of the Imperialists in Lower Saxony, materially assisted him.

But more important service was rendered to the king by the Landgrave William of Hesse Cassel, whose victorious arms struck with terror the greater part of Westphalia and Lower Saxony, the bishopric of Fulda, and even the Electorate of Cologne. It has been already stated that immediately after the conclusion of the alliance between the Landgrave and Gustavus Adolphus at Werben, two imperial generals, Fugger and Altringer, were ordered by Tilly to march into Hesse, to punish the Landgrave for his revolt from the Emperor. But this prince had as firmly withstood the arms of his enemies, as his subjects had the proclamations of Tilly inciting them to rebellion, and the battle of Leipzig presently relieved him of their presence. He availed himself of their absence with courage and resolution; in a short time, Vach, Muenden and Hoexter surrendered to him, while his rapid advance alarmed the bishoprics of Fulda, Paderborn, and the ecclesiastical territories which bordered on Hesse. The terrified states hastened by a speedy submission to set limits to his progress, and by considerable contributions to purchase exemption from plunder. After these successful enterprises, the Landgrave united his victorious army with that of Gustavus Adolphus, and concerted with him at Frankfort their future plan of operations.

In this city, a number of princes and ambassadors were assembled to congratulate Gustavus on his success, and either to conciliate his favour or to appease his indignation. Among them was the fugitive King of Bohemia, the Palatine Frederick V., who had hastened from Holland to throw himself into the arms of his avenger and protector. Gustavus gave him the unprofitable honour of greeting him as a crowned head, and endeavoured, by a respectful sympathy, to soften his sense of his misfortunes. But great as the advantages were, which Frederick had promised himself from the power and good fortune of his protector; and high as were the expectations he had built on his justice and magnanimity, the chance of this unfortunate prince's reinstatement in his kingdom was as distant as ever. The inactivity and contradictory politics of the English court had abated the zeal of Gustavus Adolphus, and an irritability which he could not always repress, made him on this occasion forget the glorious vocation of protector of the oppressed, in which, on his invasion of Germany, he had so loudly announced himself.

The terrors of the king's irresistible strength, and the near prospect of his vengeance, had also compelled George, Landgrave of Hesse Darmstadt, to a timely submission. His connection with the Emperor, and his indifference to the Protestant cause, were no secret to the king, but he was satisfied with laughing at so impotent an enemy. As the Landgrave knew his own strength and the political situation of Germany so little, as to offer himself as mediator between the contending parties, Gustavus used jestingly to call him the peacemaker. He was frequently heard to say, when at play he was winning from the Landgrave, "that the money afforded double satisfaction, as it was Imperial coin." To his affinity with the Elector of Saxony, whom Gustavus had cause to treat with forbearance, the Landgrave was indebted for the favourable terms he obtained from the king, who contented himself with the surrender of his fortress of Russelheim, and his promise of observing a strict neutrality during the war. The Counts of Westerwald and Wetteran also visited the King in Frankfort, to offer him their assistance against the Spaniards, and to conclude an alliance, which was afterwards of great service to him. The town of Frankfort itself had reason to rejoice at the presence of this monarch, who took their commerce under his protection, and by the most effectual measures restored the fairs, which had been greatly interrupted by the war.

The Swedish army was now reinforced by ten thousand Hessians, which the Landgrave of Casse commanded. Gustavus Adolphus had already invested Koenigstein; Kostheim and Floersheim surrendered after a short siege; he was in command of the Maine; and transports were preparing with all speed at Hoechst to carry his troops across the Rhine. These preparations filled the Elector of Mentz, Anselm Casimir, with consternation; and he no longer doubted but that the storm of war would next fall upon him. As a partisan of the Emperor, and one of the most active members of the League, he could expect no better treatment than his confederates, the Bishops of Wurtzburg and Bamberg, had already experienced. The situation of his territories upon the Rhine made it necessary for the enemy to secure them, while the fertility afforded an irresistible temptation to a necessitous army. Miscalculating his own strength and that of his adversaries, the Elector flattered himself that he was able to repel force by force, and weary out the valour of the Swedes by the strength of his fortresses. He ordered the fortifications of his capital to be repaired with all diligence, provided it with every necessary for sustaining a long siege, and received into the town a garrison of 2,000 Spaniards, under Don Philip de Sylva. To prevent the approach of the Swedish transports, he endeavoured to close the mouth of the Maine by driving piles, and sinking large heaps of stones and vessels. He himself, however, accompanied by the Bishop of Worms, and carrying with him his most precious effects, took refuge in Cologne, and abandoned his capital and territories to the rapacity of a tyrannical garrison. But these preparations, which bespoke less of true courage than of weak and overweening confidence, did not prevent the Swedes from marching against Mentz, and making serious preparations for an attack upon the city. While one body of their troops poured into the Rheingau, routed the Spaniards who remained there, and levied contributions on the inhabitants, another laid the Roman Catholic towns in Westerwald and Wetterau under similar contributions. The main army had encamped at Cassel, opposite Mentz; and Bernhard, Duke of Weimar, made himself master of the Maeusethurm and the Castle of Ehrenfels, on the other side of the Rhine. Gustavus was now actively preparing to cross the river, and to blockade the town on the land side, when the movements of Tilly in Franconia suddenly called him from the siege, and obtained for the Elector a short repose.

The danger of Nuremberg, which, during the absence of Gustavus Adolphus on the Rhine, Tilly had made a show of besieging, and, in the event of resistance, threatened with the cruel fate of Magdeburg, occasioned the king suddenly to retire from before Mentz. Lest he should expose himself a second time to the reproaches of Germany, and the disgrace of abandoning a confederate city to a ferocious enemy, he hastened to its relief by forced marches. On his arrival at Frankfort, however, he heard of its spirited resistance, and of the retreat of Tilly, and lost not a moment in prosecuting his designs against Mentz. Failing in an attempt to cross the Rhine at Cassel, under the cannon of the besieged, he directed his march towards the Bergstrasse, with a view of approaching the town from an opposite quarter. Here he quickly made himself master of all the places of importance, and at Stockstadt, between Gernsheim and Oppenheim, appeared a second time upon the banks of the Rhine. The whole of the Bergstrasse was abandoned by the Spaniards, who endeavoured obstinately to defend the other bank of the river. For this purpose, they had burned or sunk all the vessels in the neighbourhood, and arranged a formidable force on the banks, in case the king should attempt the passage at that place.

On this occasion, the king's impetuosity exposed him to great danger of falling into the hands of the enemy. In order to reconnoitre the opposite bank, he crossed the river in a small boat; he had scarcely landed when he was attacked by a party of Spanish horse, from whose hands he only saved himself by a precipitate retreat. Having at last, with the assistance of the neighbouring fishermen, succeeded in procuring a few transports, he despatched two of them across the river, bearing Count Brahe and 300 Swedes. Scarcely had this officer time to entrench himself on the opposite bank, when he was attacked by 14 squadrons of Spanish dragoons and cuirassiers. Superior as the enemy was in number, Count Brahe, with his small force, bravely defended himself, and gained time for the king to support him with fresh troops. The Spaniards at last retired with the loss of 600 men, some taking refuge in Oppenheim, and others in Mentz. A lion of marble on a high pillar, holding a naked sword in his paw, and a helmet on his head, was erected seventy years after the event, to point out to the traveller the spot where the immortal monarch crossed the great river of Germany.

Gustavus Adolphus now conveyed his artillery and the greater part of his troops over the river, and laid siege to Oppenheim, which, after a brave resistance, was, on the 8th December, 1631, carried by storm. Five hundred Spaniards, who had so courageously defended the place, fell indiscriminately a sacrifice to the fury of the Swedes. The crossing of the Rhine by Gustavus struck terror into the Spaniards and Lorrainers, who had thought themselves protected by the river from the vengeance of the Swedes. Rapid flight was now their only security; every place incapable of an effectual defence was immediately abandoned. After a long train of outrages on the defenceless citizens, the troops of Lorraine evacuated Worms, which, before their departure, they treated with wanton cruelty. The Spaniards hastened to shut themselves up in Frankenthal, where they hoped to defy the victorious arms of Gustavus Adolphus.

The king lost no time in prosecuting his designs against Mentz, into which the flower of the Spanish troops had thrown themselves. While he advanced on the left bank of the Rhine, the Landgrave of Hesse Cassel moved forward on the other, reducing several strong places on his march. The besieged Spaniards, though hemmed in on both sides, displayed at first a bold determination, and threw, for several days, a shower of bombs into the Swedish camp, which cost the king many of his bravest soldiers. But notwithstanding, the Swedes continually gained ground, and had at last advanced so close to the ditch that they prepared seriously for storming the place. The courage of the besieged now began to droop. They trembled before the furious impetuosity of the Swedish soldiers, of which Marienberg, in Wurtzburg, had afforded so fearful an example. The same dreadful fate awaited Mentz, if taken by storm; and the enemy might even be easily tempted to revenge the carnage of Magdeburg on this rich and magnificent residence of a Roman Catholic prince. To save the town, rather than their own lives, the Spanish garrison capitulated on the fourth day, and obtained from the magnanimity of Gustavus a safe conduct to Luxembourg; the greater part of them, however, following the example of many others, enlisted in the service of Sweden.

On the 13th December, 1631, the king made his entry into the conquered town, and fixed his quarters in the palace of the Elector. Eighty pieces of cannon fell into his hands, and the citizens were obliged to redeem their property from pillage, by a payment of 80,000 florins. The benefits of this redemption did not extend to the Jews and the clergy, who were obliged to make large and separate contributions for themselves. The library of the Elector was seized by the king as his share, and presented by him to his chancellor, Oxenstiern, who intended it for the Academy of Westerrah, but the vessel in which it was shipped to Sweden foundered at sea.

After the loss of Mentz, misfortune still pursued the Spaniards on the Rhine. Shortly before the capture of that city, the Landgrave of Hesse Cassel had taken Falkenstein and Reifenberg, and the fortress of Koningstein surrendered to the Hessians. The Rhinegrave, Otto Louis, one of the king's generals, defeated nine Spanish squadrons who were on their march for Frankenthal, and made himself master of the most important towns upon the Rhine, from Boppart to Bacharach. After the capture of the fortress of Braunfels, which was effected by the Count of Wetterau, with the co-operation of the Swedes, the Spaniards quickly lost every place in Wetterau, while in the Palatinate they retained few places besides Frankenthal. Landau and Kronweisenberg openly declared for the Swedes; Spires offered troops for the king's service; Manheim was gained through the prudence of the Duke Bernard of Weimar, and the negligence of its governor, who, for this misconduct, was tried before the council of war, at Heidelberg, and beheaded.

The king had protracted the campaign into the depth of winter, and the severity of the season was perhaps one cause of the advantage his soldiers gained over those of the enemy. But the exhausted troops now stood in need of the repose of winter quarters, which, after the surrender of Mentz, Gustavus assigned to them, in its neighbourhood. He himself employed the interval of inactivity in the field, which the season of the year enjoined, in arranging, with his chancellor, the affairs of his cabinet, in treating for a neutrality with some of his enemies, and adjusting some political disputes which had sprung up with a neighbouring ally. He chose the city of Mentz for his winter quarters, and the settlement of these state affairs, and showed a greater partiality for this town, than seemed consistent with the interests of the German princes, or the shortness of his visit to the Empire. Not content with strongly fortifying it, he erected at the opposite angle which the Maine forms with the Rhine, a new citadel, which was named Gustavusburg from its founder, but which is better known under the title of Pfaffenraub or Pfaffenzwang.—[Priests' plunder; alluding to the means by which the expense of its erection had been defrayed.]

While Gustavus Adolphus made himself master of the Rhine, and threatened the three neighbouring electorates with his victorious arms, his vigilant enemies in Paris and St. Germain's made use of every artifice to deprive him of the support of France, and, if possible, to involve him in a war with that power. By his sudden and equivocal march to the Rhine, he had surprised his friends, and furnished his enemies with the means of exciting a distrust of his intentions. After the conquest of Wurtzburg, and of the greater part of Franconia, the road into Bavaria and Austria lay open to him through Bamberg and the Upper Palatinate; and the expectation was as general, as it was natural, that he would not delay to attack the Emperor and the Duke of Bavaria in the very centre of their power, and, by the reduction of his two principal enemies, bring the war immediately to an end. But to the surprise of both parties, Gustavus left the path which general expectation had thus marked out for him; and instead of advancing to the right, turned to the left, to make the less important and more innocent princes of the Rhine feel his power, while he gave time to his more formidable opponents to recruit their strength. Nothing but the paramount design of reinstating the unfortunate Palatine, Frederick V., in the possession of his territories, by the expulsion of the Spaniards, could seem to account for this strange step; and the belief that Gustavus was about to effect that restoration, silenced for a while the suspicions of his friends and the calumnies of his enemies. But the Lower Palatinate was now almost entirely cleared of the enemy; and yet Gustavus continued to form new schemes of conquest on the Rhine, and to withhold the reconquered country from the Palatine, its rightful owner. In vain did the English ambassador remind him of what justice demanded, and what his own solemn engagement made a duty of honour; Gustavus replied to these demands with bitter complaints of the inactivity of the English court, and prepared to carry his victorious standard into Alsace, and even into Lorraine.

A distrust of the Swedish monarch was now loud and open, while the malice of his enemies busily circulated the most injurious reports as to his intentions. Richelieu, the minister of Louis XIII., had long witnessed with anxiety the king's progress towards the French frontier, and the suspicious temper of Louis rendered him but too accessible to the evil surmises which the occasion gave rise to. France was at this time involved in a civil war with her Protestant subjects, and the fear was not altogether groundless, that the approach of a victorious monarch of their party might revive their drooping spirit, and encourage them to a more desperate resistance. This might be the case, even if Gustavus Adolphus was far from showing a disposition to encourage them, or to act unfaithfully towards his ally, the King of France. But the vindictive Bishop of Wurtzburg, who was anxious to avenge the loss of his dominions, the envenomed rhetoric of the Jesuits and the active zeal of the Bavarian minister, represented this dreaded alliance between the Huguenots and the Swedes as an undoubted fact, and filled the timid mind of Louis with the most alarming fears. Not merely chimerical politicians, but many of the best informed Roman Catholics, fully believed that the king was on the point of breaking into the heart of France, to make common cause with the Huguenots, and to overturn the Catholic religion within the kingdom. Fanatical zealots already saw him, with his army, crossing the Alps, and dethroning the Viceregent of Christ in Italy. Such reports no doubt soon refute themselves; yet it cannot be denied that Gustavus, by his manoeuvres on the Rhine, gave a dangerous handle to the malice of his enemies, and in some measure justified the suspicion that he directed his arms, not so much against the Emperor and the Duke of Bavaria, as against the Roman Catholic religion itself.

The general clamour of discontent which the Jesuits raised in all the Catholic courts, against the alliance between France and the enemy of the church, at last compelled Cardinal Richelieu to take a decisive step for the security of his religion, and at once to convince the Roman Catholic world of the zeal of France, and of the selfish policy of the ecclesiastical states of Germany. Convinced that the views of the King of Sweden, like his own, aimed solely at the humiliation of the power of Austria, he hesitated not to promise to the princes of the League, on the part of Sweden, a complete neutrality, immediately they abandoned their alliance with the Emperor and withdrew their troops. Whatever the resolution these princes should adopt, Richelieu would equally attain his object. By their separation from the Austrian interest, Ferdinand would be exposed to the combined attack of France and Sweden; and Gustavus Adolphus, freed from his other enemies in Germany, would be able to direct his undivided force against the hereditary dominions of Austria. In that event, the fall of Austria was inevitable, and this great object of Richelieu's policy would be gained without injury to the church. If, on the other hand, the princes of the League persisted in their opposition, and adhered to the Austrian alliance, the result would indeed be more doubtful, but still France would have sufficiently proved to all Europe the sincerity of her attachment to the Catholic cause, and performed her duty as a member of the Roman Church. The princes of the League would then appear the sole authors of those evils, which the continuance of the war would unavoidably bring upon the Roman Catholics of Germany; they alone, by their wilful and obstinate adherence to the Emperor, would frustrate the measures employed for their protection, involve the church in danger, and themselves in ruin.

Richelieu pursued this plan with greater zeal, the more he was embarrassed by the repeated demands of the Elector of Bavaria for assistance from France; for this prince, as already stated, when he first began to entertain suspicions of the Emperor, entered immediately into a secret alliance with France, by which, in the event of any change in the Emperor's sentiments, he hoped to secure the possession of the Palatinate. But though the origin of the treaty clearly showed against what enemy it was directed, Maximilian now thought proper to make use of it against the King of Sweden, and did not hesitate to demand from France that assistance against her ally, which she had simply promised against Austria. Richelieu, embarrassed by this conflicting alliance with two hostile powers, had no resource left but to endeavour to put a speedy termination to their hostilities; and as little inclined to sacrifice Bavaria, as he was disabled, by his treaty with Sweden, from assisting it, he set himself, with all diligence, to bring about a neutrality, as the only means of fulfilling his obligations to both. For this purpose, the Marquis of Breze was sent, as his plenipotentiary, to the King of Sweden at Mentz, to learn his sentiments on this point, and to procure from him favourable conditions for the allied princes. But if Louis XIII. had powerful motives for wishing for this neutrality, Gustavus Adolphus had as grave reasons for desiring the contrary. Convinced by numerous proofs that the hatred of the princes of the League to the Protestant religion was invincible, their aversion to the foreign power of the Swedes inextinguishable, and their attachment to the House of Austria irrevocable, he apprehended less danger from their open hostility, than from a neutrality which was so little in unison with their real inclinations; and, moreover, as he was constrained to carry on the war in Germany at the expense of the enemy, he manifestly sustained great loss if he diminished their number without increasing that of his friends. It was not surprising, therefore, if Gustavus evinced little inclination to purchase the neutrality of the League, by which he was likely to gain so little, at the expense of the advantages he had already obtained.

The conditions, accordingly, upon which he offered to adopt the neutrality towards Bavaria were severe, and suited to these views. He required of the whole League a full and entire cessation from all hostilities; the recall of their troops from the imperial army, from the conquered towns, and from all the Protestant countries; the reduction of their military force; the exclusion of the imperial armies from their territories, and from supplies either of men, provisions, or ammunition. Hard as the conditions were, which the victor thus imposed upon the vanquished, the French mediator flattered himself he should be able to induce the Elector of Bavaria to accept them. In order to give time for an accommodation, Gustavus had agreed to a cessation of hostilities for a fortnight. But at the very time when this monarch was receiving from the French agents repeated assurances of the favourable progress of the negociation, an intercepted letter from the Elector to Pappenheim, the imperial general in Westphalia, revealed the perfidy of that prince, as having no other object in view by the whole negociation, than to gain time for his measures of defence. Far from intending to fetter his military operations by a truce with Sweden, the artful prince hastened his preparations, and employed the leisure which his enemy afforded him, in making the most active dispositions for resistance. The negociation accordingly failed, and served only to increase the animosity of the Bavarians and the Swedes.

Tilly's augmented force, with which he threatened to overrun Franconia, urgently required the king's presence in that circle; but it was necessary to expel previously the Spaniards from the Rhine, and to cut off their means of invading Germany from the Netherlands. With this view, Gustavus Adolphus had made an offer of neutrality to the Elector of Treves, Philip von Zeltern, on condition that the fortress of Hermanstein should be delivered up to him, and a free passage granted to his troops through Coblentz. But unwillingly as the Elector had beheld the Spaniards within his territories, he was still less disposed to commit his estates to the suspicious protection of a heretic, and to make the Swedish conqueror master of his destinies. Too weak to maintain his independence between two such powerful competitors, he took refuge in the protection of France. With his usual prudence, Richelieu profited by the embarrassments of this prince to augment the power of France, and to gain for her an important ally on the German frontier. A numerous French army was despatched to protect the territory of Treves, and a French garrison was received into Ehrenbreitstein. But the object which had moved the Elector to this bold step was not completely gained, for the offended pride of Gustavus Adolphus was not appeased till he had obtained a free passage for his troops through Treves.

Pending these negociations with Treves and France, the king's generals had entirely cleared the territory of Mentz of the Spanish garrisons, and Gustavus himself completed the conquest of this district by the capture of Kreutznach. To protect these conquests, the chancellor Oxenstiern was left with a division of the army upon the Middle Rhine, while the main body, under the king himself, began its march against the enemy in Franconia.

The possession of this circle had, in the mean time, been disputed with variable success, between Count Tilly and the Swedish General Horn, whom Gustavus had left there with 8,000 men; and the Bishopric of Bamberg, in particular, was at once the prize and the scene of their struggle. Called away to the Rhine by his other projects, the king had left to his general the chastisement of the bishop, whose perfidy had excited his indignation, and the activity of Horn justified the choice. In a short time, he subdued the greater part of the bishopric; and the capital itself, abandoned by its imperial garrison, was carried by storm. The banished bishop urgently demanded assistance from the Elector of Bavaria, who was at length persuaded to put an end to Tilly's inactivity. Fully empowered by his master's order to restore the bishop to his possessions, this general collected his troops, who were scattered over the Upper Palatinate, and with an army of 20,000 men advanced upon Bamberg. Firmly resolved to maintain his conquest even against this overwhelming force, Horn awaited the enemy within the walls of Bamberg; but was obliged to yield to the vanguard of Tilly what he had thought to be able to dispute with his whole army. A panic which suddenly seized his troops, and which no presence of mind of their general could check, opened the gates to the enemy, and it was with difficulty that the troops, baggage, and artillery, were saved. The reconquest of Bamberg was the fruit of this victory; but Tilly, with all his activity, was unable to overtake the Swedish general, who retired in good order behind the Maine. The king's appearance in Franconia, and his junction with Gustavus Horn at Kitzingen, put a stop to Tilly's conquests, and compelled him to provide for his own safety by a rapid retreat.

The king made a general review of his troops at Aschaffenburg. After his junction with Gustavus Horn, Banner, and Duke William of Weimar, they amounted to nearly 40,000 men. His progress through Franconia was uninterrupted; for Tilly, far too weak to encounter an enemy so superior in numbers, had retreated, by rapid marches, towards the Danube. Bohemia and Bavaria were now equally near to the king, and, uncertain whither his victorious course might be directed, Maximilian could form no immediate resolution. The choice of the king, and the fate of both provinces, now depended on the road that should be left open to Count Tilly. It was dangerous, during the approach of so formidable an enemy, to leave Bavaria undefended, in order to protect Austria; still more dangerous, by receiving Tilly into Bavaria, to draw thither the enemy also, and to render it the seat of a destructive war. The cares of the sovereign finally overcame the scruples of the statesman, and Tilly received orders, at all hazards, to cover the frontiers of Bavaria with his army.

Nuremberg received with triumphant joy the protector of the Protestant religion and German freedom, and the enthusiasm of the citizens expressed itself on his arrival in loud transports of admiration and joy. Even Gustavus could not contain his astonishment, to see himself in this city, which was the very centre of Germany, where he had never expected to be able to penetrate. The noble appearance of his person, completed the impression produced by his glorious exploits, and the condescension with which he received the congratulations of this free city won all hearts. He now confirmed the alliance he had concluded with it on the shores of the Baltic, and excited the citizens to zealous activity and fraternal unity against the common enemy. After a short stay in Nuremberg, he followed his army to the Danube, and appeared unexpectedly before the frontier town of Donauwerth. A numerous Bavarian garrison defended the place; and their commander, Rodolph Maximilian, Duke of Saxe Lauenburg, showed at first a resolute determination to defend it till the arrival of Tilly. But the vigour with which Gustavus Adolphus prosecuted the siege, soon compelled him to take measures for a speedy and secure retreat, which amidst a tremendous fire from the Swedish artillery he successfully executed.

The conquest of Donauwerth opened to the king the further side of the Danube, and now the small river Lech alone separated him from Bavaria. The immediate danger of his dominions aroused all Maximilian's activity; and however little he had hitherto disturbed the enemy's progress to his frontier, he now determined to dispute as resolutely the remainder of their course. On the opposite bank of the Lech, near the small town of Rain, Tilly occupied a strongly fortified camp, which, surrounded by three rivers, bade defiance to all attack. All the bridges over the Lech were destroyed; the whole course of the stream protected by strong garrisons as far as Augsburg; and that town itself, which had long betrayed its impatience to follow the example of Nuremberg and Frankfort, secured by a Bavarian garrison, and the disarming of its inhabitants. The Elector himself, with all the troops he could collect, threw himself into Tilly's camp, as if all his hopes centred on this single point, and here the good fortune of the Swedes was to suffer shipwreck for ever.

Gustavus Adolphus, after subduing the whole territory of Augsburg, on his own side of the river, and opening to his troops a rich supply of necessaries from that quarter, soon appeared on the bank opposite the Bavarian entrenchments. It was now the month of March, when the river, swollen by frequent rains, and the melting of the snow from the mountains of the Tyrol, flowed full and rapid between its steep banks. Its boiling current threatened the rash assailants with certain destruction, while from the opposite side the enemy's cannon showed their murderous mouths. If, in despite of the fury both of fire and water, they should accomplish this almost impossible passage, a fresh and vigorous enemy awaited the exhausted troops in an impregnable camp; and when they needed repose and refreshment they must prepare for battle. With exhausted powers they must ascend the hostile entrenchments, whose strength seemed to bid defiance to every assault. A defeat sustained upon this shore would be attended with inevitable destruction, since the same stream which impeded their advance would also cut off their retreat, if fortune should abandon them.

The Swedish council of war, which the king now assembled, strongly urged upon him all these considerations, in order to deter him from this dangerous undertaking. The most intrepid were appalled, and a troop of honourable warriors, who had grown gray in the field, did not hesitate to express their alarm. But the king's resolution was fixed. "What!" said he to Gustavus Horn, who spoke for the rest, "have we crossed the Baltic, and so many great rivers of Germany, and shall we now be checked by a brook like the Lech?" Gustavus had already, at great personal risk, reconnoitred the whole country, and discovered that his own side of the river was higher than the other, and consequently gave a considerable advantage to the fire of the Swedish artillery over that of the enemy. With great presence of mind he determined to profit by this circumstance. At the point where the left bank of the Lech forms an angle with the right, he immediately caused three batteries to be erected, from which 72 field-pieces maintained a cross fire upon the enemy. While this tremendous cannonade drove the Bavarians from the opposite bank, he caused to be erected a bridge over the river with all possible rapidity. A thick smoke, kept up by burning wood and wet straw, concealed for some time the progress of the work from the enemy, while the continued thunder of the cannon overpowered the noise of the axes. He kept alive by his own example the courage of his troops, and discharged more than 60 cannon with his own hand. The cannonade was returned by the Bavarians with equal vivacity for two hours, though with less effect, as the Swedish batteries swept the lower opposite bank, while their height served as a breast-work to their own troops. In vain, therefore, did the Bavarians attempt to destroy these works; the superior fire of the Swedes threw them into disorder, and the bridge was completed under their very eyes. On this dreadful day, Tilly did every thing in his power to encourage his troops; and no danger could drive him from the bank. At length he found the death which he sought, a cannon ball shattered his leg; and Altringer, his brave companion-in-arms, was, soon after, dangerously wounded in the head. Deprived of the animating presence of their two generals, the Bavarians gave way at last, and Maximilian, in spite of his own judgment, was driven to adopt a pusillanimous resolve. Overcome by the persuasions of the dying Tilly, whose wonted firmness was overpowered by the near approach of death, he gave up his impregnable position for lost; and the discovery by the Swedes of a ford, by which their cavalry were on the point of passing, accelerated his inglorious retreat. The same night, before a single soldier of the enemy had crossed the Lech, he broke up his camp, and, without giving time for the King to harass him in his march, retreated in good order to Neuburgh and Ingolstadt. With astonishment did Gustavus Adolphus, who completed the passage of the river on the following day behold the hostile camp abandoned; and the Elector's flight surprised him still more, when he saw the strength of the position he had quitted. "Had I been the Bavarian," said he, "though a cannon ball had carried away my beard and chin, never would I have abandoned a position like this, and laid open my territory to my enemies."

Bavaria now lay exposed to the conqueror; and, for the first time, the tide of war, which had hitherto only beat against its frontier, now flowed over its long spared and fertile fields. Before, however, the King proceeded to the conquest of these provinces, he delivered the town of Augsburg from the yoke of Bavaria; exacted an oath of allegiance from the citizens; and to secure its observance, left a garrison in the town. He then advanced, by rapid marches, against Ingolstadt, in order, by the capture of this important fortress, which the Elector covered with the greater part of his army, to secure his conquests in Bavaria, and obtain a firm footing on the Danube.

Shortly after the appearance of the Swedish King before Ingolstadt, the wounded Tilly, after experiencing the caprice of unstable fortune, terminated his career within the walls of that town. Conquered by the superior generalship of Gustavus Adolphus, he lost, at the close of his days, all the laurels of his earlier victories, and appeased, by a series of misfortunes, the demands of justice, and the avenging manes of Magdeburg. In his death, the Imperial army and that of the League sustained an irreparable loss; the Roman Catholic religion was deprived of its most zealous defender, and Maximilian of Bavaria of the most faithful of his servants, who sealed his fidelity by his death, and even in his dying moments fulfilled the duties of a general. His last message to the Elector was an urgent advice to take possession of Ratisbon, in order to maintain the command of the Danube, and to keep open the communication with Bohemia.

With the confidence which was the natural fruit of so many victories, Gustavus Adolphus commenced the siege of Ingolstadt, hoping to gain the town by the fury of his first assault. But the strength of its fortifications, and the bravery of its garrison, presented obstacles greater than any he had had to encounter since the battle of Breitenfeld, and the walls of Ingolstadt were near putting an end to his career. While reconnoitring the works, a 24-pounder killed his horse under him, and he fell to the ground, while almost immediately afterwards another ball struck his favourite, the young Margrave of Baden, by his side. With perfect self-possession the king rose, and quieted the fears of his troops by immediately mounting another horse.

The occupation of Ratisbon by the Bavarians, who, by the advice of Tilly, had surprised this town by stratagem, and placed in it a strong garrison, quickly changed the king's plan of operations. He had flattered himself with the hope of gaining this town, which favoured the Protestant cause, and to find in it an ally as devoted to him as Nuremberg, Augsburg, and Frankfort. Its seizure by the Bavarians seemed to postpone for a long time the fulfilment of his favourite project of making himself master of the Danube, and cutting off his adversaries' supplies from Bohemia. He suddenly raised the siege of Ingolstadt, before which he had wasted both his time and his troops, and penetrated into the interior of Bavaria, in order to draw the Elector into that quarter for the defence of his territories, and thus to strip the Danube of its defenders.

The whole country, as far as Munich, now lay open to the conqueror. Mosburg, Landshut, and the whole territory of Freysingen, submitted; nothing could resist his arms. But if he met with no regular force to oppose his progress, he had to contend against a still more implacable enemy in the heart of every Bavarian—religious fanaticism. Soldiers who did not believe in the Pope were, in this country, a new and unheard-of phenomenon; the blind zeal of the priests represented them to the peasantry as monsters, the children of hell, and their leader as Antichrist. No wonder, then, if they thought themselves released from all the ties of nature and humanity towards this brood of Satan, and justified in committing the most savage atrocities upon them. Woe to the Swedish soldier who fell into their hands! All the torments which inventive malice could devise were exercised upon these unhappy victims; and the sight of their mangled bodies exasperated the army to a fearful retaliation. Gustavus Adolphus, alone, sullied the lustre of his heroic character by no act of revenge; and the aversion which the Bavarians felt towards his religion, far from making him depart from the obligations of humanity towards that unfortunate people, seemed to impose upon him the stricter duty to honour his religion by a more constant clemency.

The approach of the king spread terror and consternation in the capital, which, stripped of its defenders, and abandoned by its principal inhabitants, placed all its hopes in the magnanimity of the conqueror. By an unconditional and voluntary surrender, it hoped to disarm his vengeance; and sent deputies even to Freysingen to lay at his feet the keys of the city. Strongly as the king might have been tempted by the inhumanity of the Bavarians, and the hostility of their sovereign, to make a dreadful use of the rights of victory; pressed as he was by Germans to avenge the fate of Magdeburg on the capital of its destroyer, this great prince scorned this mean revenge; and the very helplessness of his enemies disarmed his severity. Contented with the more noble triumph of conducting the Palatine Frederick with the pomp of a victor into the very palace of the prince who had been the chief instrument of his ruin, and the usurper of his territories, he heightened the brilliancy of his triumphal entry by the brighter splendour of moderation and clemency.

The King found in Munich only a forsaken palace, for the Elector's treasures had been transported to Werfen. The magnificence of the building astonished him; and he asked the guide who showed the apartments who was the architect. "No other," replied he, "than the Elector himself."—"I wish," said the King, "I had this architect to send to Stockholm." "That," he was answered, "the architect will take care to prevent." When the arsenal was examined, they found nothing but carriages, stripped of their cannon. The latter had been so artfully concealed under the floor, that no traces of them remained; and but for the treachery of a workman, the deceit would not have been detected. "Rise up from the dead," said the King, "and come to judgment." The floor was pulled up, and 140 pieces of cannon discovered, some of extraordinary calibre, which had been principally taken in the Palatinate and Bohemia. A treasure of 30,000 gold ducats, concealed in one of the largest, completed the pleasure which the King received from this valuable acquisition.

A far more welcome spectacle still would have been the Bavarian army itself; for his march into the heart of Bavaria had been undertaken chiefly with the view of luring them from their entrenchments. In this expectation he was disappointed. No enemy appeared; no entreaties, however urgent, on the part of his subjects, could induce the Elector to risk the remainder of his army to the chances of a battle. Shut up in Ratisbon, he awaited the reinforcements which Wallenstein was bringing from Bohemia; and endeavoured, in the mean time, to amuse his enemy and keep him inactive, by reviving the negociation for a neutrality. But the King's distrust, too often and too justly excited by his previous conduct, frustrated this design; and the intentional delay of Wallenstein abandoned Bavaria to the Swedes.

Thus far had Gustavus advanced from victory to victory, without meeting with an enemy able to cope with him. A part of Bavaria and Swabia, the Bishoprics of Franconia, the Lower Palatinate, and the Archbishopric of Mentz, lay conquered in his rear. An uninterrupted career of conquest had conducted him to the threshold of Austria; and the most brilliant success had fully justified the plan of operations which he had formed after the battle of Breitenfeld. If he had not succeeded to his wish in promoting a confederacy among the Protestant States, he had at least disarmed or weakened the League, carried on the war chiefly at its expense, lessened the Emperor's resources, emboldened the weaker States, and while he laid under contribution the allies of the Emperor, forced a way through their territories into Austria itself. Where arms were unavailing, the greatest service was rendered by the friendship of the free cities, whose affections he had gained, by the double ties of policy and religion; and, as long as he should maintain his superiority in the field, he might reckon on every thing from their zeal. By his conquests on the Rhine, the Spaniards were cut off from the Lower Palatinate, even if the state of the war in the Netherlands left them at liberty to interfere in the affairs of Germany. The Duke of Lorraine, too, after his unfortunate campaign, had been glad to adopt a neutrality. Even the numerous garrisons he had left behind him, in his progress through Germany, had not diminished his army; and, fresh and vigorous as when he first began his march, he now stood in the centre of Bavaria, determined and prepared to carry the war into the heart of Austria.

While Gustavus Adolphus thus maintained his superiority within the empire, fortune, in another quarter, had been no less favourable to his ally, the Elector of Saxony. By the arrangement concerted between these princes at Halle, after the battle of Leipzig, the conquest of Bohemia was intrusted to the Elector of Saxony, while the King reserved for himself the attack upon the territories of the League. The first fruits which the Elector reaped from the battle of Breitenfeld, was the reconquest of Leipzig, which was shortly followed by the expulsion of the Austrian garrisons from the entire circle. Reinforced by the troops who deserted to him from the hostile garrisons, the Saxon General, Arnheim, marched towards Lusatia, which had been overrun by an Imperial General, Rudolph von Tiefenbach, in order to chastise the Elector for embracing the cause of the enemy. He had already commenced in this weakly defended province the usual course of devastation, taken several towns, and terrified Dresden itself by his approach, when his destructive progress was suddenly stopped, by an express mandate from the Emperor to spare the possessions of the King of Saxony.

Ferdinand had perceived too late the errors of that policy, which reduced the Elector of Saxony to extremities, and forcibly driven this powerful monarch into an alliance with Sweden. By moderation, equally ill-timed, he now wished to repair if possible the consequences of his haughtiness; and thus committed a second error in endeavouring to repair the first. To deprive his enemy of so powerful an ally, he had opened, through the intervention of Spain, a negociation with the Elector; and in order to facilitate an accommodation, Tiefenbach was ordered immediately to retire from Saxony. But these concessions of the Emperor, far from producing the desired effect, only revealed to the Elector the embarrassment of his adversary and his own importance, and emboldened him the more to prosecute the advantages he had already obtained. How could he, moreover, without becoming chargeable with the most shameful ingratitude, abandon an ally to whom he had given the most solemn assurances of fidelity, and to whom he was indebted for the preservation of his dominions, and even of his Electoral dignity?

The Saxon army, now relieved from the necessity of marching into Lusatia, advanced towards Bohemia, where a combination of favourable circumstances seemed to ensure them an easy victory. In this kingdom, the first scene of this fatal war, the flames of dissension still smouldered beneath the ashes, while the discontent of the inhabitants was fomented by daily acts of oppression and tyranny. On every side, this unfortunate country showed signs of a mournful change. Whole districts had changed their proprietors, and groaned under the hated yoke of Roman Catholic masters, whom the favour of the Emperor and the Jesuits had enriched with the plunder and possessions of the exiled Protestants. Others, taking advantage themselves of the general distress, had purchased, at a low rate, the confiscated estates. The blood of the most eminent champions of liberty had been shed upon the scaffold; and such as by a timely flight avoided that fate, were wandering in misery far from their native land, while the obsequious slaves of despotism enjoyed their patrimony. Still more insupportable than the oppression of these petty tyrants, was the restraint of conscience which was imposed without distinction on all the Protestants of that kingdom. No external danger, no opposition on the part of the nation, however steadfast, not even the fearful lessons of past experience could check in the Jesuits the rage of proselytism; where fair means were ineffectual, recourse was had to military force to bring the deluded wanderers within the pale of the church. The inhabitants of Joachimsthal, on the frontiers between Bohemia and Meissen, were the chief sufferers from this violence. Two imperial commissaries, accompanied by as many Jesuits, and supported by fifteen musketeers, made their appearance in this peaceful valley to preach the gospel to the heretics. Where the rhetoric of the former was ineffectual, the forcibly quartering the latter upon the houses, and threats of banishment and fines were tried. But on this occasion, the good cause prevailed, and the bold resistance of this small district compelled the Emperor disgracefully to recall his mandate of conversion. The example of the court had, however, afforded a precedent to the Roman Catholics of the empire, and seemed to justify every act of oppression which their insolence tempted them to wreak upon the Protestants. It is not surprising, then, if this persecuted party was favourable to a revolution, and saw with pleasure their deliverers on the frontiers.

The Saxon army was already on its march towards Prague, the imperial garrisons everywhere retired before them. Schloeckenau, Tetschen, Aussig, Leutmeritz, soon fell into the enemy's hands, and every Roman Catholic place was abandoned to plunder. Consternation seized all the Papists of the Empire; and conscious of the outrages which they themselves had committed on the Protestants, they did not venture to abide the vengeful arrival of a Protestant army. All the Roman Catholics, who had anything to lose, fled hastily from the country to the capital, which again they presently abandoned. Prague was unprepared for an attack, and was too weakly garrisoned to sustain a long siege. Too late had the Emperor resolved to despatch Field-Marshal Tiefenbach to the defence of this capital. Before the imperial orders could reach the head-quarters of that general, in Silesia, the Saxons were already close to Prague, the Protestant inhabitants of which showed little zeal, while the weakness of the garrison left no room to hope a long resistance. In this fearful state of embarrassment, the Roman Catholics of Prague looked for security to Wallenstein, who now lived in that city as a private individual. But far from lending his military experience, and the weight of his name, towards its defence, he seized the favourable opportunity to satiate his thirst for revenge. If he did not actually invite the Saxons to Prague, at least his conduct facilitated its capture. Though unprepared, the town might still hold out until succours could arrive; and an imperial colonel, Count Maradas, showed serious intentions of undertaking its defence. But without command and authority, and having no support but his own zeal and courage, he did not dare to venture upon such a step without the advice of a superior. He therefore consulted the Duke of Friedland, whose approbation might supply the want of authority from the Emperor, and to whom the Bohemian generals were referred by an express edict of the court in the last extremity. He, however, artfully excused himself, on the plea of holding no official appointment, and his long retirement from the political world; while he weakened the resolution of the subalterns by the scruples which he suggested, and painted in the strongest colours. At last, to render the consternation general and complete, he quitted the capital with his whole court, however little he had to fear from its capture; and the city was lost, because, by his departure, he showed that he despaired of its safety. His example was followed by all the Roman Catholic nobility, the generals with their troops, the clergy, and all the officers of the crown. All night the people were employed in saving their persons and effects. The roads to Vienna were crowded with fugitives, who scarcely recovered from their consternation till they reached the imperial city. Maradas himself, despairing of the safety of Prague, followed the rest, and led his small detachment to Tabor, where he awaited the event.

Profound silence reigned in Prague, when the Saxons next morning appeared before it; no preparations were made for defence; not a single shot from the walls announced an intention of resistance. On the contrary, a crowd of spectators from the town, allured by curiosity, came flocking round, to behold the foreign army; and the peaceful confidence with which they advanced, resembled a friendly salutation, more than a hostile reception. From the concurrent reports of these people, the Saxons learned that the town had been deserted by the troops, and that the government had fled to Budweiss. This unexpected and inexplicable absence of resistance excited Arnheim's distrust the more, as the speedy approach of the Silesian succours was no secret to him, and as he knew that the Saxon army was too indifferently provided with materials for undertaking a siege, and by far too weak in numbers to attempt to take the place by storm. Apprehensive of stratagem, he redoubled his vigilance; and he continued in this conviction until Wallenstein's house-steward, whom he discovered among the crowd, confirmed to him this intelligence. "The town is ours without a blow!" exclaimed he in astonishment to his officers, and immediately summoned it by a trumpeter.

The citizens of Prague, thus shamefully abandoned by their defenders, had long taken their resolution; all that they had to do was to secure their properties and liberties by an advantageous capitulation. No sooner was the treaty signed by the Saxon general, in his master's name, than the gates were opened, without farther opposition; and upon the 11th of November, 1631, the army made their triumphal entry. The Elector soon after followed in person, to receive the homage of those whom he had newly taken under his protection; for it was only in the character of protector that the three towns of Prague had surrendered to him. Their allegiance to the Austrian monarchy was not to be dissolved by the step they had taken. In proportion as the Papists' apprehensions of reprisals on the part of the Protestants had been exaggerated, so was their surprise great at the moderation of the Elector, and the discipline of his troops. Field-Marshal Arnheim plainly evinced, on this occasion, his respect for Wallenstein. Not content with sparing his estates on his march, he now placed guards over his palace, in Prague, to prevent the plunder of any of his effects. The Roman Catholics of the town were allowed the fullest liberty of conscience; and of all the churches they had wrested from the Protestants, four only were now taken back from them. From this general indulgence, none were excluded but the Jesuits, who were generally considered as the authors of all past grievances, and thus banished the kingdom.

John George belied not the submission and dependence with which the terror of the imperial name inspired him; nor did he indulge at Prague, in a course of conduct which would assuredly have been pursued against himself in Dresden, by imperial generals, such as Tilly or Wallenstein. He carefully distinguished between the enemy with whom he was at war, and the head of the Empire, to whom he owed obedience. He did not venture to touch the household furniture of the latter, while, without scruple, he appropriated and transported to Dresden the cannon of the former. He did not take up his residence in the imperial palace, but the house of Lichtenstein; too modest to use the apartments of one whom he had deprived of a kingdom. Had this trait been related of a great man and a hero, it would irresistibly excite our admiration; but the character of this prince leaves us in doubt whether this moderation ought to be ascribed to a noble self-command, or to the littleness of a weak mind, which even good fortune could not embolden, and liberty itself could not strip of its habituated fetters.

The surrender of Prague, which was quickly followed by that of most of the other towns, effected a great and sudden change in Bohemia. Many of the Protestant nobility, who had hitherto been wandering about in misery, now returned to their native country; and Count Thurn, the famous author of the Bohemian insurrection, enjoyed the triumph of returning as a conqueror to the scene of his crime and his condemnation. Over the very bridge where the heads of his adherents, exposed to view, held out a fearful picture of the fate which had threatened himself, he now made his triumphal entry; and to remove these ghastly objects was his first care. The exiles again took possession of their properties, without thinking of recompensing for the purchase money the present possessors, who had mostly taken to flight. Even though they had received a price for their estates, they seized on every thing which had once been their own; and many had reason to rejoice at the economy of the late possessors. The lands and cattle had greatly improved in their hands; the apartments were now decorated with the most costly furniture; the cellars, which had been left empty, were richly filled; the stables supplied; the magazines stored with provisions. But distrusting the constancy of that good fortune, which had so unexpectedly smiled upon them, they hastened to get quit of these insecure possessions, and to convert their immoveable into transferable property.

The presence of the Saxons inspired all the Protestants of the kingdom with courage; and, both in the country and the capital, crowds flocked to the newly opened Protestant churches. Many, whom fear alone had retained in their adherence to Popery, now openly professed the new doctrine; and many of the late converts to Roman Catholicism gladly renounced a compulsory persuasion, to follow the earlier conviction of their conscience. All the moderation of the new regency, could not restrain the manifestation of that just displeasure, which this persecuted people felt against their oppressors. They made a fearful and cruel use of their newly recovered rights; and, in many parts of the kingdom, their hatred of the religion which they had been compelled to profess, could be satiated only by the blood of its adherents.

Meantime the succours which the imperial generals, Goetz and Tiefenbach, were conducting from Silesia, had entered Bohemia, where they were joined by some of Tilly's regiments, from the Upper Palatinate. In order to disperse them before they should receive any further reinforcement, Arnheim advanced with part of his army from Prague, and made a vigorous attack on their entrenchments near Limburg, on the Elbe. After a severe action, not without great loss, he drove the enemy from their fortified camp, and forced them, by his heavy fire, to recross the Elbe, and to destroy the bridge which they had built over that river. Nevertheless, the Imperialists obtained the advantage in several skirmishes, and the Croats pushed their incursions to the very gates of Prague. Brilliant and promising as the opening of the Bohemian campaign had been, the issue by no means satisfied the expectations of Gustavus Adolphus. Instead of vigorously following up their advantages, by forcing a passage to the Swedish army through the conquered country, and then, with it, attacking the imperial power in its centre, the Saxons weakened themselves in a war of skirmishes, in which they were not always successful, while they lost the time which should have been devoted to greater undertakings. But the Elector's subsequent conduct betrayed the motives which had prevented him from pushing his advantage over the Emperor, and by consistent measures promoting the plans of the King of Sweden.

The Emperor had now lost the greater part of Bohemia, and the Saxons were advancing against Austria, while the Swedish monarch was rapidly moving to the same point through Franconia, Swabia, and Bavaria. A long war had exhausted the strength of the Austrian monarchy, wasted the country, and diminished its armies. The renown of its victories was no more, as well as the confidence inspired by constant success; its troops had lost the obedience and discipline to which those of the Swedish monarch owed all their superiority in the field. The confederates of the Emperor were disarmed, or their fidelity shaken by the danger which threatened themselves. Even Maximilian of Bavaria, Austria's most powerful ally, seemed disposed to yield to the seductive proposition of neutrality; while his suspicious alliance with France had long been a subject of apprehension to the Emperor. The bishops of Wurtzburg and Bamberg, the Elector of Mentz, and the Duke of Lorraine, were either expelled from their territories, or threatened with immediate attack; Treves had placed itself under the protection of France. The bravery of the Hollanders gave full employment to the Spanish arms in the Netherlands; while Gustavus had driven them from the Rhine. Poland was still fettered by the truce which subsisted between that country and Sweden. The Hungarian frontier was threatened by the Transylvanian Prince, Ragotsky, a successor of Bethlen Gabor, and the inheritor of his restless mind; while the Porte was making great preparation to profit by the favourable conjuncture for aggression. Most of the Protestant states, encouraged by their protector's success, were openly and actively declaring against the Emperor. All the resources which had been obtained by the violent and oppressive extortions of Tilly and Wallenstein were exhausted; all these depots, magazines, and rallying-points, were now lost to the Emperor; and the war could no longer be carried on as before at the cost of others. To complete his embarrassment, a dangerous insurrection broke out in the territory of the Ens, where the ill-timed religious zeal of the government had provoked the Protestants to resistance; and thus fanaticism lit its torch within the empire, while a foreign enemy was already on its frontier. After so long a continuance of good fortune, such brilliant victories and extensive conquests, such fruitless effusion of blood, the Emperor saw himself a second time on the brink of that abyss, into which he was so near falling at the commencement of his reign. If Bavaria should embrace the neutrality; if Saxony should resist the tempting offers he had held out; and France resolve to attack the Spanish power at the same time in the Netherlands, in Italy and in Catalonia, the ruin of Austria would be complete; the allied powers would divide its spoils, and the political system of Germany would undergo a total change.

The chain of these disasters began with the battle of Breitenfeld, the unfortunate issue of which plainly revealed the long decided decline of the Austrian power, whose weakness had hitherto been concealed under the dazzling glitter of a grand name. The chief cause of the Swedes' superiority in the field, was evidently to be ascribed to the unlimited power of their leader, who concentrated in himself the whole strength of his party; and, unfettered in his enterprises by any higher authority, was complete master of every favourable opportunity, could control all his means to the accomplishment of his ends, and was responsible to none but himself. But since Wallenstein's dismissal, and Tilly's defeat, the very reverse of this course was pursued by the Emperor and the League. The generals wanted authority over their troops, and liberty of acting at their discretion; the soldiers were deficient in discipline and obedience; the scattered corps in combined operation; the states in attachment to the cause; the leaders in harmony among themselves, in quickness to resolve, and firmness to execute. What gave the Emperor's enemy so decided an advantage over him, was not so much their superior power, as their manner of using it. The League and the Emperor did not want means, but a mind capable of directing them with energy and effect. Even had Count Tilly not lost his old renown, distrust of Bavaria would not allow the Emperor to place the fate of Austria in the hands of one who had never concealed his attachment to the Bavarian Elector. The urgent want which Ferdinand felt, was for a general possessed of sufficient experience to form and to command an army, and willing at the same time to dedicate his services, with blind devotion, to the Austrian monarchy.

This choice now occupied the attention of the Emperor's privy council, and divided the opinions of its members. In order to oppose one monarch to another, and by the presence of their sovereign to animate the courage of the troops, Ferdinand, in the ardour of the moment, had offered himself to be the leader of his army; but little trouble was required to overturn a resolution which was the offspring of despair alone, and which yielded at once to calm reflection. But the situation which his dignity, and the duties of administration, prevented the Emperor from holding, might be filled by his son, a youth of talents and bravery, and of whom the subjects of Austria had already formed great expectations. Called by his birth to the defence of a monarchy, of whose crowns he wore two already, Ferdinand III., King of Hungary and Bohemia, united, with the natural dignity of heir to the throne, the respect of the army, and the attachment of the people, whose co-operation was indispensable to him in the conduct of the war. None but the beloved heir to the crown could venture to impose new burdens on a people already severely oppressed; his personal presence with the army could alone suppress the pernicious jealousies of the several leaders, and by the influence of his name, restore the neglected discipline of the troops to its former rigour. If so young a leader was devoid of the maturity of judgment, prudence, and military experience which practice alone could impart, this deficiency might be supplied by a judicious choice of counsellors and assistants, who, under the cover of his name, might be vested with supreme authority.

But plausible as were the arguments with which a part of the ministry supported this plan, it was met by difficulties not less serious, arising from the distrust, perhaps even the jealousy, of the Emperor, and also from the desperate state of affairs. How dangerous was it to entrust the fate of the monarchy to a youth, who was himself in need of counsel and support! How hazardous to oppose to the greatest general of his age, a tyro, whose fitness for so important a post had never yet been tested by experience; whose name, as yet unknown to fame, was far too powerless to inspire a dispirited army with the assurance of future victory! What a new burden on the country, to support the state a royal leader was required to maintain, and which the prejudices of the age considered as inseparable from his presence with the army! How serious a consideration for the prince himself, to commence his political career, with an office which must make him the scourge of his people, and the oppressor of the territories which he was hereafter to rule.

But not only was a general to be found for the army; an army must also be found for the general. Since the compulsory resignation of Wallenstein, the Emperor had defended himself more by the assistance of Bavaria and the League, than by his own armies; and it was this dependence on equivocal allies, which he was endeavouring to escape, by the appointment of a general of his own. But what possibility was there of raising an army out of nothing, without the all-powerful aid of gold, and the inspiriting name of a victorious commander; above all, an army which, by its discipline, warlike spirit, and activity, should be fit to cope with the experienced troops of the northern conqueror? In all Europe, there was but one man equal to this, and that one had been mortally affronted.

The moment had at last arrived, when more than ordinary satisfaction was to be done to the wounded pride of the Duke of Friedland. Fate itself had been his avenger, and an unbroken chain of disasters, which had assailed Austria from the day of his dismissal, had wrung from the Emperor the humiliating confession, that with this general he had lost his right arm. Every defeat of his troops opened afresh this wound; every town which he lost, revived in the mind of the deceived monarch the memory of his own weakness and ingratitude. It would have been well for him, if, in the offended general, he had only lost a leader of his troops, and a defender of his dominions; but he was destined to find in him an enemy, and the most dangerous of all, since he was least armed against the stroke of treason.

Removed from the theatre of war, and condemned to irksome inaction, while his rivals gathered laurels on the field of glory, the haughty duke had beheld these changes of fortune with affected composure, and concealed, under a glittering and theatrical pomp, the dark designs of his restless genius. Torn by burning passions within, while all without bespoke calmness and indifference, he brooded over projects of ambition and revenge, and slowly, but surely, advanced towards his end. All that he owed to the Emperor was effaced from his mind; what he himself had done for the Emperor was imprinted in burning characters on his memory. To his insatiable thirst for power, the Emperor's ingratitude was welcome, as it seemed to tear in pieces the record of past favours, to absolve him from every obligation towards his former benefactor. In the disguise of a righteous retaliation, the projects dictated by his ambition now appeared to him just and pure. In proportion as the external circle of his operations was narrowed, the world of hope expanded before him, and his dreamy imagination revelled in boundless projects, which, in any mind but such as his, madness alone could have given birth to. His services had raised him to the proudest height which it was possible for a man, by his own efforts, to attain. Fortune had denied him nothing which the subject and the citizen could lawfully enjoy. Till the moment of his dismissal, his demands had met with no refusal, his ambition had met with no check; but the blow which, at the diet of Ratisbon, humbled him, showed him the difference between ORIGINAL and DEPUTED power, the distance between the subject and his sovereign. Roused from the intoxication of his own greatness by this sudden reverse of fortune, he compared the authority which he had possessed, with that which had deprived him of it; and his ambition marked the steps which it had yet to surmount upon the ladder of fortune. From the moment he had so bitterly experienced the weight of sovereign power, his efforts were directed to attain it for himself; the wrong which he himself had suffered made him a robber. Had he not been outraged by injustice, he might have obediently moved in his orbit round the majesty of the throne, satisfied with the glory of being the brightest of its satellites. It was only when violently forced from its sphere, that his wandering star threw in disorder the system to which it belonged, and came in destructive collision with its sun.

Gustavus Adolphus had overrun the north of Germany; one place after another was lost; and at Leipzig, the flower of the Austrian army had fallen. The intelligence of this defeat soon reached the ears of Wallenstein, who, in the retired obscurity of a private station in Prague, contemplated from a calm distance the tumult of war. The news, which filled the breasts of the Roman Catholics with dismay, announced to him the return of greatness and good fortune. For him was Gustavus Adolphus labouring. Scarce had the king begun to gain reputation by his exploits, when Wallenstein lost not a moment to court his friendship, and to make common cause with this successful enemy of Austria. The banished Count Thurn, who had long entered the service of Sweden, undertook to convey Wallenstein's congratulations to the king, and to invite him to a close alliance with the duke. Wallenstein required 15,000 men from the king; and with these, and the troops he himself engaged to raise, he undertook to conquer Bohemia and Moravia, to surprise Vienna, and drive his master, the Emperor, before him into Italy. Welcome as was this unexpected proposition, its extravagant promises were naturally calculated to excite suspicion. Gustavus Adolphus was too good a judge of merit to reject with coldness the offers of one who might be so important a friend. But when Wallenstein, encouraged by the favourable reception of his first message, renewed it after the battle of Breitenfeld, and pressed for a decisive answer, the prudent monarch hesitated to trust his reputation to the chimerical projects of so daring an adventurer, and to commit so large a force to the honesty of a man who felt no shame in openly avowing himself a traitor. He excused himself, therefore, on the plea of the weakness of his army which, if diminished by so large a detachment, would certainly suffer in its march through the empire; and thus, perhaps, by excess of caution, lost an opportunity of putting an immediate end to the war. He afterwards endeavoured to renew the negociation; but the favourable moment was past, and Wallenstein's offended pride never forgave the first neglect.

But the king's hesitation, perhaps, only accelerated the breach, which their characters made inevitable sooner or later. Both framed by nature to give laws, not to receive them, they could not long have co-operated in an enterprise, which eminently demanded mutual submission and sacrifices. Wallenstein was NOTHING where he was not EVERYTHING; he must either act with unlimited power, or not at all. So cordially, too, did Gustavus dislike control, that he had almost renounced his advantageous alliance with France, because it threatened to fetter his own independent judgment. Wallenstein was lost to a party, if he could not lead; the latter was, if possible, still less disposed to obey the instructions of another. If the pretensions of a rival would be so irksome to the Duke of Friedland, in the conduct of combined operations, in the division of the spoil they would be insupportable. The proud monarch might condescend to accept the assistance of a rebellious subject against the Emperor, and to reward his valuable services with regal munificence; but he never could so far lose sight of his own dignity, and the majesty of royalty, as to bestow the recompense which the extravagant ambition of Wallenstein demanded; and requite an act of treason, however useful, with a crown. In him, therefore, even if all Europe should tacitly acquiesce, Wallenstein had reason to expect the most decided and formidable opponent to his views on the Bohemian crown; and in all Europe he was the only one who could enforce his opposition. Constituted Dictator in Germany by Wallenstein himself, he might turn his arms against him, and consider himself bound by no obligations to one who was himself a traitor. There was no room for a Wallenstein under such an ally; and it was, apparently, this conviction, and not any supposed designs upon the imperial throne, that he alluded to, when, after the death of the King of Sweden, he exclaimed, "It is well for him and me that he is gone. The German Empire does not require two such leaders."

His first scheme of revenge on the house of Austria had indeed failed; but the purpose itself remained unalterable; the choice of means alone was changed. What he had failed in effecting with the King of Sweden, he hoped to obtain with less difficulty and more advantage from the Elector of Saxony. Him he was as certain of being able to bend to his views, as he had always been doubtful of Gustavus Adolphus. Having always maintained a good understanding with his old friend Arnheim, he now made use of him to bring about an alliance with Saxony, by which he hoped to render himself equally formidable to the Emperor and the King of Sweden. He had reason to expect that a scheme, which, if successful, would deprive the Swedish monarch of his influence in Germany, would be welcomed by the Elector of Saxony, who he knew was jealous of the power and offended at the lofty pretensions of Gustavus Adolphus. If he succeeded in separating Saxony from the Swedish alliance, and in establishing, conjointly with that power, a third party in the Empire, the fate of the war would be placed in his hand; and by this single step he would succeed in gratifying his revenge against the Emperor, revenging the neglect of the Swedish monarch, and on the ruin of both, raising the edifice of his own greatness.

But whatever course he might follow in the prosecution of his designs, he could not carry them into effect without an army entirely devoted to him. Such a force could not be secretly raised without its coming to the knowledge of the imperial court, where it would naturally excite suspicion, and thus frustrate his design in the very outset. From the army, too, the rebellious purposes for which it was destined, must be concealed till the very moment of execution, since it could scarcely be expected that they would at once be prepared to listen to the voice of a traitor, and serve against their legitimate sovereign. Wallenstein, therefore, must raise it publicly and in name of the Emperor, and be placed at its head, with unlimited authority, by the Emperor himself. But how could this be accomplished, otherwise than by his being appointed to the command of the army, and entrusted with full powers to conduct the war. Yet neither his pride, nor his interest, permitted him to sue in person for this post, and as a suppliant to accept from the favour of the Emperor a limited power, when an unlimited authority might be extorted from his fears. In order to make himself the master of the terms on which he would resume the command of the army, his course was to wait until the post should be forced upon him. This was the advice he received from Arnheim, and this the end for which he laboured with profound policy and restless activity.

Convinced that extreme necessity would alone conquer the Emperor's irresolution, and render powerless the opposition of his bitter enemies, Bavaria and Spain, he henceforth occupied himself in promoting the success of the enemy, and in increasing the embarrassments of his master. It was apparently by his instigation and advice, that the Saxons, when on the route to Lusatia and Silesia, had turned their march towards Bohemia, and overrun that defenceless kingdom, where their rapid conquests was partly the result of his measures. By the fears which he affected to entertain, he paralyzed every effort at resistance; and his precipitate retreat caused the delivery of the capital to the enemy. At a conference with the Saxon general, which was held at Kaunitz under the pretext of negociating for a peace, the seal was put to the conspiracy, and the conquest of Bohemia was the first fruits of this mutual understanding. While Wallenstein was thus personally endeavouring to heighten the perplexities of Austria, and while the rapid movements of the Swedes upon the Rhine effectually promoted his designs, his friends and bribed adherents in Vienna uttered loud complaints of the public calamities, and represented the dismissal of the general as the sole cause of all these misfortunes. "Had Wallenstein commanded, matters would never have come to this," exclaimed a thousand voices; while their opinions found supporters, even in the Emperor's privy council.

Their repeated remonstrances were not needed to convince the embarrassed Emperor of his general's merits, and of his own error. His dependence on Bavaria and the League had soon become insupportable; but hitherto this dependence permitted him not to show his distrust, or irritate the Elector by the recall of Wallenstein. But now when his necessities grew every day more pressing, and the weakness of Bavaria more apparent, he could no longer hesitate to listen to the friends of the duke, and to consider their overtures for his restoration to command. The immense riches Wallenstein possessed, the universal reputation he enjoyed, the rapidity with which six years before he had assembled an army of 40,000 men, the little expense at which he had maintained this formidable force, the actions he had performed at its head, and lastly, the zeal and fidelity he had displayed for his master's honour, still lived in the Emperor's recollection, and made Wallenstein seem to him the ablest instrument to restore the balance between the belligerent powers, to save Austria, and preserve the Catholic religion. However sensibly the imperial pride might feel the humiliation, in being forced to make so unequivocal an admission of past errors and present necessity; however painful it was to descend to humble entreaties, from the height of imperial command; however doubtful the fidelity of so deeply injured and implacable a character; however loudly and urgently the Spanish minister and the Elector of Bavaria protested against this step, the immediate pressure of necessity finally overcame every other consideration, and the friends of the duke were empowered to consult him on the subject, and to hold out the prospect of his restoration.

Informed of all that was transacted in the Emperor's cabinet to his advantage, Wallenstein possessed sufficient self-command to conceal his inward triumph and to assume the mask of indifference. The moment of vengeance was at last come, and his proud heart exulted in the prospect of repaying with interest the injuries of the Emperor. With artful eloquence, he expatiated upon the happy tranquillity of a private station, which had blessed him since his retirement from a political stage. Too long, he said, had he tasted the pleasures of ease and independence, to sacrifice to the vain phantom of glory, the uncertain favour of princes. All his desire of power and distinction were extinct: tranquillity and repose were now the sole object of his wishes. The better to conceal his real impatience, he declined the Emperor's invitation to the court, but at the same time, to facilitate the negociations, came to Znaim in Moravia.

At first, it was proposed to limit the authority to be intrusted to him, by the presence of a superior, in order, by this expedient, to silence the objections of the Elector of Bavaria. The imperial deputies, Questenberg and Werdenberg, who, as old friends of the duke, had been employed in this delicate mission, were instructed to propose that the King of Hungary should remain with the army, and learn the art of war under Wallenstein. But the very mention of his name threatened to put a period to the whole negociation. "No! never," exclaimed Wallenstein, "will I submit to a colleague in my office. No—not even if it were God himself, with whom I should have to share my command." But even when this obnoxious point was given up, Prince Eggenberg, the Emperor's minister and favourite, who had always been the steady friend and zealous champion of Wallenstein, and was therefore expressly sent to him, exhausted his eloquence in vain to overcome the pretended reluctance of the duke. "The Emperor," he admitted, "had, in Wallenstein, thrown away the most costly jewel in his crown: but unwillingly and compulsorily only had he taken this step, which he had since deeply repented of; while his esteem for the duke had remained unaltered, his favour for him undiminished. Of these sentiments he now gave the most decisive proof, by reposing unlimited confidence in his fidelity and capacity to repair the mistakes of his predecessors, and to change the whole aspect of affairs. It would be great and noble to sacrifice his just indignation to the good of his country; dignified and worthy of him to refute the evil calumny of his enemies by the double warmth of his zeal. This victory over himself," concluded the prince, "would crown his other unparalleled services to the empire, and render him the greatest man of his age."

These humiliating confessions, and flattering assurances, seemed at last to disarm the anger of the duke; but not before he had disburdened his heart of his reproaches against the Emperor, pompously dwelt upon his own services, and humbled to the utmost the monarch who solicited his assistance, did he condescend to listen to the attractive proposals of the minister. As if he yielded entirely to the force of their arguments, he condescended with a haughty reluctance to that which was the most ardent wish of his heart; and deigned to favour the ambassadors with a ray of hope. But far from putting an end to the Emperor's embarrassments, by giving at once a full and unconditional consent, he only acceded to a part of his demands, that he might exalt the value of that which still remained, and was of most importance. He accepted the command, but only for three months; merely for the purpose of raising, but not of leading, an army. He wished only to show his power and ability in its organization, and to display before the eyes of the Emperor, the greatness of that assistance, which he still retained in his hands. Convinced that an army raised by his name alone, would, if deprived of its creator, soon sink again into nothing, he intended it to serve only as a decoy to draw more important concessions from his master. And yet Ferdinand congratulated himself, even in having gained so much as he had.

Wallenstein did not long delay to fulfil those promises which all Germany regarded as chimerical, and which Gustavus Adolphus had considered as extravagant. But the foundation for the present enterprise had been long laid, and he now only put in motion the machinery, which many years had been prepared for the purpose. Scarcely had the news spread of Wallenstein's levies, when, from every quarter of the Austrian monarchy, crowds of soldiers repaired to try their fortunes under this experienced general. Many, who had before fought under his standards, had been admiring eye-witnesses of his great actions, and experienced his magnanimity, came forward from their retirement, to share with him a second time both booty and glory. The greatness of the pay he promised attracted thousands, and the plentiful supplies the soldier was likely to enjoy at the cost of the peasant, was to the latter an irresistible inducement to embrace the military life at once, rather than be the victim of its oppression. All the Austrian provinces were compelled to assist in the equipment. No class was exempt from taxation—no dignity or privilege from capitation. The Spanish court, as well as the King of Hungary, agreed to contribute a considerable sum. The ministers made large presents, while Wallenstein himself advanced 200,000 dollars from his own income to hasten the armament. The poorer officers he supported out of his own revenues; and, by his own example, by brilliant promotions, and still more brilliant promises, he induced all, who were able, to raise troops at their own expense. Whoever raised a corps at his own cost was to be its commander. In the appointment of officers, religion made no difference. Riches, bravery and experience were more regarded than creed. By this uniform treatment of different religious sects, and still more by his express declaration, that his present levy had nothing to do with religion, the Protestant subjects of the empire were tranquillized, and reconciled to bear their share of the public burdens. The duke, at the same time, did not omit to treat, in his own name, with foreign states for men and money. He prevailed on the Duke of Lorraine, a second time, to espouse the cause of the Emperor. Poland was urged to supply him with Cossacks, and Italy with warlike necessaries. Before the three months were expired, the army which was assembled in Moravia, amounted to no less than 40,000 men, chiefly drawn from the unconquered parts of Bohemia, from Moravia, Silesia, and the German provinces of the House of Austria. What to every one had appeared impracticable, Wallenstein, to the astonishment of all Europe, had in a short time effected. The charm of his name, his treasures, and his genius, had assembled thousands in arms, where before Austria had only looked for hundreds. Furnished, even to superfluity, with all necessaries, commanded by experienced officers, and inflamed by enthusiasm which assured itself of victory, this newly created army only awaited the signal of their leader to show themselves, by the bravery of their deeds, worthy of his choice.

The duke had fulfilled his promise, and the troops were ready to take the field; he then retired, and left to the Emperor to choose a commander. But it would have been as easy to raise a second army like the first, as to find any other commander for it than Wallenstein. This promising army, the last hope of the Emperor, was nothing but an illusion, as soon as the charm was dissolved which had called it into existence; by Wallenstein it had been raised, and, without him, it sank like a creation of magic into its original nothingness. Its officers were either bound to him as his debtors, or, as his creditors, closely connected with his interests, and the preservation of his power. The regiments he had entrusted to his own relations, creatures, and favourites. He, and he alone, could discharge to the troops the extravagant promises by which they had been lured into his service. His pledged word was the only security on which their bold expectations rested; a blind reliance on his omnipotence, the only tie which linked together in one common life and soul the various impulses of their zeal. There was an end of the good fortune of each individual, if he retired, who alone was the voucher of its fulfilment.

However little Wallenstein was serious in his refusal, he successfully employed this means to terrify the Emperor into consenting to his extravagant conditions. The progress of the enemy every day increased the pressure of the Emperor's difficulties, while the remedy was also close at hand; a word from him might terminate the general embarrassment. Prince Eggenberg at length received orders, for the third and last time, at any cost and sacrifice, to induce his friend, Wallenstein, to accept the command.

He found him at Znaim in Moravia, pompously surrounded by the troops, the possession of which he made the Emperor so earnestly to long for. As a suppliant did the haughty subject receive the deputy of his sovereign. "He never could trust," he said, "to a restoration to command, which he owed to the Emperor's necessities, and not to his sense of justice. He was now courted, because the danger had reached its height, and safety was hoped for from his arm only; but his successful services would soon cause the servant to be forgotten, and the return of security would bring back renewed ingratitude. If he deceived the expectations formed of him, his long earned renown would be forfeited; even if he fulfilled them, his repose and happiness must be sacrificed. Soon would envy be excited anew, and the dependent monarch would not hesitate, a second time, to make an offering of convenience to a servant whom he could now dispense with. Better for him at once, and voluntarily, to resign a post from which sooner or later the intrigues of his enemies would expel him. Security and content were to be found in the bosom of private life; and nothing but the wish to oblige the Emperor had induced him, reluctantly enough, to relinquish for a time his blissful repose."

Tired of this long farce, the minister at last assumed a serious tone, and threatened the obstinate duke with the Emperor's resentment, if he persisted in his refusal. "Low enough had the imperial dignity," he added, "stooped already; and yet, instead of exciting his magnanimity by its condescension, had only flattered his pride and increased his obstinacy. If this sacrifice had been made in vain, he would not answer, but that the suppliant might be converted into the sovereign, and that the monarch might not avenge his injured dignity on his rebellious subject. However greatly Ferdinand may have erred, the Emperor at least had a claim to obedience; the man might be mistaken, but the monarch could not confess his error. If the Duke of Friedland had suffered by an unjust decree, he might yet be recompensed for all his losses; the wound which it had itself inflicted, the hand of Majesty might heal. If he asked security for his person and his dignities, the Emperor's equity would refuse him no reasonable demand. Majesty contemned, admitted not of any atonement; disobedience to its commands cancelled the most brilliant services. The Emperor required his services, and as emperor he demanded them. Whatever price Wallenstein might set upon them, the Emperor would readily agree to; but he demanded obedience, or the weight of his indignation should crush the refractory servant."

Wallenstein, whose extensive possessions within the Austrian monarchy were momentarily exposed to the power of the Emperor, was keenly sensible that this was no idle threat; yet it was not fear that at last overcame his affected reluctance. This imperious tone of itself, was to his mind a plain proof of the weakness and despair which dictated it, while the Emperor's readiness to yield all his demands, convinced him that he had attained the summit of his wishes. He now made a show of yielding to the persuasions of Eggenberg; and left him, in order to write down the conditions on which he accepted the command.

Not without apprehension, did the minister receive the writing, in which the proudest of subjects had prescribed laws to the proudest of sovereigns. But however little confidence he had in the moderation of his friend, the extravagant contents of his writing surpassed even his worst expectations. Wallenstein required the uncontrolled command over all the German armies of Austria and Spain, with unlimited powers to reward and punish. Neither the King of Hungary, nor the Emperor himself, were to appear in the army, still less to exercise any act of authority over it. No commission in the army, no pension or letter of grace, was to be granted by the Emperor without Wallenstein's approval. All the conquests and confiscations that should take place, were to be placed entirely at Wallenstein's disposal, to the exclusion of every other tribunal. For his ordinary pay, an imperial hereditary estate was to be assigned him, with another of the conquered estates within the empire for his extraordinary expenses. Every Austrian province was to be opened to him if he required it in case of retreat. He farther demanded the assurance of the possession of the Duchy of Mecklenburg, in the event of a future peace; and a formal and timely intimation, if it should be deemed necessary a second time to deprive him of the command.

In vain the minister entreated him to moderate his demands, which, if granted, would deprive the Emperor of all authority over his own troops, and make him absolutely dependent on his general. The value placed on his services had been too plainly manifested to prevent him dictating the price at which they were to be purchased. If the pressure of circumstances compelled the Emperor to grant these demands, it was more than a mere feeling of haughtiness and desire of revenge which induced the duke to make them. His plans of rebellion were formed, to their success, every one of the conditions for which Wallenstein stipulated in this treaty with the court, was indispensable. Those plans required that the Emperor should be deprived of all authority in Germany, and be placed at the mercy of his general; and this object would be attained, the moment Ferdinand subscribed the required conditions. The use which Wallenstein intended to make of his army, (widely different indeed from that for which it was entrusted to him,) brooked not of a divided power, and still less of an authority superior to his own. To be the sole master of the will of his troops, he must also be the sole master of their destinies; insensibly to supplant his sovereign, and to transfer permanently to his own person the rights of sovereignty, which were only lent to him for a time by a higher authority, he must cautiously keep the latter out of the view of the army. Hence his obstinate refusal to allow any prince of the house of Austria to be present with the army. The liberty of free disposal of all the conquered and confiscated estates in the empire, would also afford him fearful means of purchasing dependents and instruments of his plans, and of acting the dictator in Germany more absolutely than ever any Emperor did in time of peace. By the right to use any of the Austrian provinces as a place of refuge, in case of need, he had full power to hold the Emperor a prisoner by means of his own forces, and within his own dominions; to exhaust the strength and resources of these countries, and to undermine the power of Austria in its very foundation.

Whatever might be the issue, he had equally secured his own advantage, by the conditions he had extorted from the Emperor. If circumstances proved favourable to his daring project, this treaty with the Emperor facilitated its execution; if on the contrary, the course of things ran counter to it, it would at least afford him a brilliant compensation for the failure of his plans. But how could he consider an agreement valid, which was extorted from his sovereign, and based upon treason? How could he hope to bind the Emperor by a written agreement, in the face of a law which condemned to death every one who should have the presumption to impose conditions upon him? But this criminal was the most indispensable man in the empire, and Ferdinand, well practised in dissimulation, granted him for the present all he required.

At last, then, the imperial army had found a commander-in-chief worthy of the name. Every other authority in the army, even that of the Emperor himself, ceased from the moment Wallenstein assumed the commander's baton, and every act was invalid which did not proceed from him. From the banks of the Danube, to those of the Weser and the Oder, was felt the life-giving dawning of this new star; a new spirit seemed to inspire the troops of the emperor, a new epoch of the war began. The Papists form fresh hopes, the Protestant beholds with anxiety the changed course of affairs.

The greater the price at which the services of the new general had been purchased, the greater justly were the expectations from those which the court of the Emperor entertained. But the duke was in no hurry to fulfil these expectations. Already in the vicinity of Bohemia, and at the head of a formidable force, he had but to show himself there, in order to overpower the exhausted force of the Saxons, and brilliantly to commence his new career by the reconquest of that kingdom. But, contented with harassing the enemy with indecisive skirmishes of his Croats, he abandoned the best part of that kingdom to be plundered, and moved calmly forward in pursuit of his own selfish plans. His design was, not to conquer the Saxons, but to unite with them. Exclusively occupied with this important object, he remained inactive in the hope of conquering more surely by means of negociation. He left no expedient untried, to detach this prince from the Swedish alliance; and Ferdinand himself, ever inclined to an accommodation with this prince, approved of this proceeding. But the great debt which Saxony owed to Sweden, was as yet too freshly remembered to allow of such an act of perfidy; and even had the Elector been disposed to yield to the temptation, the equivocal character of Wallenstein, and the bad character of Austrian policy, precluded any reliance in the integrity of its promises. Notorious already as a treacherous statesman, he met not with faith upon the very occasion when perhaps he intended to act honestly; and, moreover, was denied, by circumstances, the opportunity of proving the sincerity of his intentions, by the disclosure of his real motives.

He, therefore, unwillingly resolved to extort, by force of arms, what he could not obtain by negociation. Suddenly assembling his troops, he appeared before Prague ere the Saxons had time to advance to its relief. After a short resistance, the treachery of some Capuchins opens the gates to one of his regiments; and the garrison, who had taken refuge in the citadel, soon laid down their arms upon disgraceful conditions. Master of the capital, he hoped to carry on more successfully his negociations at the Saxon court; but even while he was renewing his proposals to Arnheim, he did not hesitate to give them weight by striking a decisive blow. He hastened to seize the narrow passes between Aussig and Pirna, with a view of cutting off the retreat of the Saxons into their own country; but the rapidity of Arnheim's operations fortunately extricated them from the danger. After the retreat of this general, Egra and Leutmeritz, the last strongholds of the Saxons, surrendered to the conqueror: and the whole kingdom was restored to its legitimate sovereign, in less time than it had been lost.

Wallenstein, less occupied with the interests of his master, than with the furtherance of his own plans, now purposed to carry the war into Saxony, and by ravaging his territories, compel the Elector to enter into a private treaty with the Emperor, or rather with himself. But, however little accustomed he was to make his will bend to circumstances, he now perceived the necessity of postponing his favourite scheme for a time, to a more pressing emergency. While he was driving the Saxons from Bohemia, Gustavus Adolphus had been gaining the victories, already detailed, on the Rhine and the Danube, and carried the war through Franconia and Swabia, to the frontiers of Bavaria. Maximilian, defeated on the Lech, and deprived by death of Count Tilly, his best support, urgently solicited the Emperor to send with all speed the Duke of Friedland to his assistance, from Bohemia, and by the defence of Bavaria, to avert the danger from Austria itself. He also made the same request to Wallenstein, and entreated him, till he could himself come with the main force, to despatch in the mean time a few regiments to his aid. Ferdinand seconded the request with all his influence, and one messenger after another was sent to Wallenstein, urging him to move towards the Danube.

It now appeared how completely the Emperor had sacrificed his authority, in surrendering to another the supreme command of his troops. Indifferent to Maximilian's entreaties, and deaf to the Emperor's repeated commands, Wallenstein remained inactive in Bohemia, and abandoned the Elector to his fate. The remembrance of the evil service which Maximilian had rendered him with the Emperor, at the Diet at Ratisbon, was deeply engraved on the implacable mind of the duke, and the Elector's late attempts to prevent his reinstatement, were no secret to him. The moment of revenging this affront had now arrived, and Maximilian was doomed to pay dearly for his folly, in provoking the most revengeful of men. Wallenstein maintained, that Bohemia ought not to be left exposed, and that Austria could not be better protected, than by allowing the Swedish army to waste its strength before the Bavarian fortress. Thus, by the arm of the Swedes, he chastised his enemy; and while one place after another fell into their hands, he allowed the Elector vainly to await his arrival in Ratisbon. It was only when the complete subjugation of Bohemia left him without excuse, and the conquests of Gustavus Adolphus in Bavaria threatened Austria itself, that he yielded to the pressing entreaties of the Elector and the Emperor, and determined to effect the long-expected union with the former; an event, which, according to the general anticipation of the Roman Catholics, would decide the fate of the campaign.

Gustavus Adolphus, too weak in numbers to cope even with Wallenstein's force alone, naturally dreaded the junction of such powerful armies, and the little energy he used to prevent it, was the occasion of great surprise. Apparently he reckoned too much on the hatred which alienated the leaders, and seemed to render their effectual co-operation improbable; when the event contradicted his views, it was too late to repair his error. On the first certain intelligence he received of their designs, he hastened to the Upper Palatinate, for the purpose of intercepting the Elector: but the latter had already arrived there, and the junction had been effected at Egra.

This frontier town had been chosen by Wallenstein, for the scene of his triumph over his proud rival. Not content with having seen him, as it were, a suppliant at his feet, he imposed upon him the hard condition of leaving his territories in his rear exposed to the enemy, and declaring by this long march to meet him, the necessity and distress to which he was reduced. Even to this humiliation, the haughty prince patiently submitted. It had cost him a severe struggle to ask for protection of the man who, if his own wishes had been consulted, would never have had the power of granting it: but having once made up his mind to it, he was ready to bear all the annoyances which were inseparable from that resolve, and sufficiently master of himself to put up with petty grievances, when an important end was in view.

But whatever pains it had cost to effect this junction, it was equally difficult to settle the conditions on which it was to be maintained. The united army must be placed under the command of one individual, if any object was to be gained by the union, and each general was equally averse to yield to the superior authority of the other. If Maximilian rested his claim on his electoral dignity, the nobleness of his descent, and his influence in the empire, Wallenstein's military renown, and the unlimited command conferred on him by the Emperor, gave an equally strong title to it. If it was deeply humiliating to the pride of the former to serve under an imperial subject, the idea of imposing laws on so imperious a spirit, flattered in the same degree the haughtiness of Wallenstein. An obstinate dispute ensued, which, however, terminated in a mutual compromise to Wallenstein's advantage. To him was assigned the unlimited command of both armies, particularly in battle, while the Elector was deprived of all power of altering the order of battle, or even the route of the army. He retained only the bare right of punishing and rewarding his own troops, and the free use of these, when not acting in conjunction with the Imperialists.

After these preliminaries were settled, the two generals at last ventured upon an interview; but not until they had mutually promised to bury the past in oblivion, and all the outward formalities of a reconciliation had been settled. According to agreement, they publicly embraced in the sight of their troops, and made mutual professions of friendship, while in reality the hearts of both were overflowing with malice. Maximilian, well versed in dissimulation, had sufficient command over himself, not to betray in a single feature his real feelings; but a malicious triumph sparkled in the eyes of Wallenstein, and the constraint which was visible in all his movements, betrayed the violence of the emotion which overpowered his proud soul.

The combined Imperial and Bavarian armies amounted to nearly 60,000 men, chiefly veterans. Before this force, the King of Sweden was not in a condition to keep the field. As his attempt to prevent their junction had failed, he commenced a rapid retreat into Franconia, and awaited there for some decisive movement on the part of the enemy, in order to form his own plans. The position of the combined armies between the frontiers of Saxony and Bavaria, left it for some time doubtful whether they would remove the war into the former, or endeavour to drive the Swedes from the Danube, and deliver Bavaria. Saxony had been stripped of troops by Arnheim, who was pursuing his conquests in Silesia; not without a secret design, it was generally supposed, of favouring the entrance of the Duke of Friedland into that electorate, and of thus driving the irresolute John George into peace with the Emperor. Gustavus Adolphus himself, fully persuaded that Wallenstein's views were directed against Saxony, hastily despatched a strong reinforcement to the assistance of his confederate, with the intention, as soon as circumstances would allow, of following with the main body. But the movements of Wallenstein's army soon led him to suspect that he himself was the object of attack; and the Duke's march through the Upper Palatinate, placed the matter beyond a doubt. The question now was, how to provide for his own security, and the prize was no longer his supremacy, but his very existence. His fertile genius must now supply the means, not of conquest, but of preservation. The approach of the enemy had surprised him before he had time to concentrate his troops, which were scattered all over Germany, or to summon his allies to his aid. Too weak to meet the enemy in the field, he had no choice left, but either to throw himself into Nuremberg, and run the risk of being shut up in its walls, or to sacrifice that city, and await a reinforcement under the cannon of Donauwerth. Indifferent to danger or difficulty, while he obeyed the call of humanity or honour, he chose the first without hesitation, firmly resolved to bury himself with his whole army under the ruins of Nuremberg, rather than to purchase his own safety by the sacrifice of his confederates.

Measures were immediately taken to surround the city and suburbs with redoubts, and to form an entrenched camp. Several thousand workmen immediately commenced this extensive work, and an heroic determination to hazard life and property in the common cause, animated the inhabitants of Nuremberg. A trench, eight feet deep and twelve broad, surrounded the whole fortification; the lines were defended by redoubts and batteries, the gates by half moons. The river Pegnitz, which flows through Nuremberg, divided the whole camp into two semicircles, whose communication was secured by several bridges. About three hundred pieces of cannon defended the town-walls and the intrenchments. The peasantry from the neighbouring villages, and the inhabitants of Nuremberg, assisted the Swedish soldiers so zealously, that on the seventh day the army was able to enter the camp, and, in a fortnight, this great work was completed.

While these operations were carried on without the walls, the magistrates of Nuremberg were busily occupied in filling the magazines with provisions and ammunition for a long siege. Measures were taken, at the same time, to secure the health of the inhabitants, which was likely to be endangered by the conflux of so many people; cleanliness was enforced by the strictest regulations. In order, if necessary, to support the King, the youth of the city were embodied and trained to arms, the militia of the town considerably reinforced, and a new regiment raised, consisting of four-and-twenty names, according to the letters of the alphabet. Gustavus had, in the mean time, called to his assistance his allies, Duke William of Weimar, and the Landgrave of Hesse Cassel; and ordered his generals on the Rhine, in Thuringia and Lower Saxony, to commence their march immediately, and join him with their troops in Nuremberg. His army, which was encamped within the lines, did not amount to more than 16,000 men, scarcely a third of the enemy.

The Imperialists had, in the mean time, by slow marches, advanced to Neumark, where Wallenstein made a general review. At the sight of this formidable force, he could not refrain from indulging in a childish boast: "In four days," said he, "it will be shown whether I or the King of Sweden is to be master of the world." Yet, notwithstanding his superiority, he did nothing to fulfil his promise; and even let slip the opportunity of crushing his enemy, when the latter had the hardihood to leave his lines to meet him. "Battles enough have been fought," was his answer to those who advised him to attack the King, "it is now time to try another method." Wallenstein's well-founded reputation required not any of those rash enterprises on which younger soldiers rush, in the hope of gaining a name. Satisfied that the enemy's despair would dearly sell a victory, while a defeat would irretrievably ruin the Emperor's affairs, he resolved to wear out the ardour of his opponent by a tedious blockade, and by thus depriving him of every opportunity of availing himself of his impetuous bravery, take from him the very advantage which had hitherto rendered him invincible. Without making any attack, therefore, he erected a strong fortified camp on the other side of the Pegnitz, and opposite Nuremberg; and, by this well chosen position, cut off from the city and the camp of Gustavus all supplies from Franconia, Swabia, and Thuringia. Thus he held in siege at once the city and the King, and flattered himself with the hope of slowly, but surely, wearing out by famine and pestilence the courage of his opponent whom he had no wish to encounter in the field.

Little aware, however, of the resources and the strength of his adversary, Wallenstein had not taken sufficient precautions to avert from himself the fate he was designing for others. From the whole of the neighbouring country, the peasantry had fled with their property; and what little provision remained, must be obstinately contested with the Swedes. The King spared the magazines within the town, as long as it was possible to provision his army from without; and these forays produced constant skirmishes between the Croats and the Swedish cavalry, of which the surrounding country exhibited the most melancholy traces. The necessaries of life must be obtained sword in hand; and the foraging parties could not venture out without a numerous escort. And when this supply failed, the town opened its magazines to the King, but Wallenstein had to support his troops from a distance. A large convoy from Bavaria was on its way to him, with an escort of a thousand men. Gustavus Adolphus having received intelligence of its approach, immediately sent out a regiment of cavalry to intercept it; and the darkness of the night favoured the enterprise. The whole convoy, with the town in which it was, fell into the hands of the Swedes; the Imperial escort was cut to pieces; about 1,200 cattle carried off; and a thousand waggons, loaded with bread, which could not be brought away, were set on fire. Seven regiments, which Wallenstein had sent forward to Altdorp to cover the entrance of the long and anxiously expected convoy, were attacked by the King, who had, in like manner, advanced to cover the retreat of his cavalry, and routed after an obstinate action, being driven back into the Imperial camp, with the loss of 400 men. So many checks and difficulties, and so firm and unexpected a resistance on the part of the King, made the Duke of Friedland repent that he had declined to hazard a battle. The strength of the Swedish camp rendered an attack impracticable; and the armed youth of Nuremberg served the King as a nursery from which he could supply his loss of troops. The want of provisions, which began to be felt in the Imperial camp as strongly as in the Swedish, rendered it uncertain which party would be first compelled to give way.

Fifteen days had the two armies now remained in view of each other, equally defended by inaccessible entrenchments, without attempting anything more than slight attacks and unimportant skirmishes. On both sides, infectious diseases, the natural consequence of bad food, and a crowded population, had occasioned a greater loss than the sword. And this evil daily increased. But at length, the long expected succours arrived in the Swedish camp; and by this strong reinforcement, the King was now enabled to obey the dictates of his native courage, and to break the chains which had hitherto fettered him.

In obedience to his requisitions, the Duke of Weimar had hastily drawn together a corps from the garrisons in Lower Saxony and Thuringia, which, at Schweinfurt in Franconia, was joined by four Saxon regiments, and at Kitzingen by the corps of the Rhine, which the Landgrave of Hesse, and the Palatine of Birkenfeld, despatched to the relief of the King. The Chancellor, Oxenstiern, undertook to lead this force to its destination. After being joined at Windsheim by the Duke of Weimar himself, and the Swedish General Banner, he advanced by rapid marches to Bruck and Eltersdorf, where he passed the Rednitz, and reached the Swedish camp in safety. This reinforcement amounted to nearly 50,000 men, and was attended by a train of 60 pieces of cannon, and 4,000 baggage waggons. Gustavus now saw himself at the head of an army of nearly 70,000 strong, without reckoning the militia of Nuremberg, which, in case of necessity, could bring into the field about 30,000 fighting men; a formidable force, opposed to another not less formidable. The war seemed at length compressed to the point of a single battle, which was to decide its fearful issue. With divided sympathies, Europe looked with anxiety to this scene, where the whole strength of the two contending parties was fearfully drawn, as it were, to a focus.

If, before the arrival of the Swedish succours, a want of provisions had been felt, the evil was now fearfully increased to a dreadful height in both camps, for Wallenstein had also received reinforcements from Bavaria. Besides the 120,000 men confronted to each other, and more than 50,000 horses, in the two armies, and besides the inhabitants of Nuremberg, whose number far exceeded the Swedish army, there were in the camp of Wallenstein about 15,000 women, with as many drivers, and nearly the same number in that of the Swedes. The custom of the time permitted the soldier to carry his family with him to the field. A number of prostitutes followed the Imperialists; while, with the view of preventing such excesses, Gustavus's care for the morals of his soldiers promoted marriages. For the rising generation, who had this camp for their home and country, regular military schools were established, which educated a race of excellent warriors, by which means the army might in a manner recruit itself in the course of a long campaign. No wonder, then, if these wandering nations exhausted every territory in which they encamped, and by their immense consumption raised the necessaries of life to an exorbitant price. All the mills of Nuremberg were insufficient to grind the corn required for each day; and 15,000 pounds of bread, which were daily delivered, by the town into the Swedish camp, excited, without allaying, the hunger of the soldiers. The laudable exertions of the magistrates of Nuremberg could not prevent the greater part of the horses from dying for want of forage, while the increasing mortality in the camp consigned more than a hundred men daily to the grave.

To put an end to these distresses, Gustavus Adolphus, relying on his numerical superiority, left his lines on the 25th day, forming before the enemy in order of battle, while he cannonaded the duke's camp from three batteries erected on the side of the Rednitz. But the duke remained immoveable in his entrenchments, and contented himself with answering this challenge by a distant fire of cannon and musketry. His plan was to wear out the king by his inactivity, and by the force of famine to overcome his resolute determination; and neither the remonstrances of Maximilian, and the impatience of his army, nor the ridicule of his opponent, could shake his purpose. Gustavus, deceived in his hope of forcing a battle, and compelled by his increasing necessities, now attempted impossibilities, and resolved to storm a position which art and nature had combined to render impregnable.

Intrusting his own camp to the militia of Nuremberg, on the fifty-eighth day of his encampment, (the festival of St. Bartholomew,) he advanced in full order of battle, and passing the Rednitz at Furth, easily drove the enemy's outposts before him. The main army of the Imperialists was posted on the steep heights between the Biber and the Rednitz, called the Old Fortress and Altenberg; while the camp itself, commanded by these eminences, spread out immeasurably along the plain. On these heights, the whole of the artillery was placed. Deep trenches surrounded inaccessible redoubts, while thick barricadoes, with pointed palisades, defended the approaches to the heights, from the summits of which, Wallenstein calmly and securely discharged the lightnings of his artillery from amid the dark thunder-clouds of smoke. A destructive fire of musketry was maintained behind the breastworks, and a hundred pieces of cannon threatened the desperate assailant with certain destruction. Against this dangerous post Gustavus now directed his attack; five hundred musketeers, supported by a few infantry, (for a greater number could not act in the narrow space,) enjoyed the unenvied privilege of first throwing themselves into the open jaws of death. The assault was furious, the resistance obstinate. Exposed to the whole fire of the enemy's artillery, and infuriate by the prospect of inevitable death, these determined warriors rushed forward to storm the heights; which, in an instant, converted into a flaming volcano, discharged on them a shower of shot. At the same moment, the heavy cavalry rushed forward into the openings which the artillery had made in the close ranks of the assailants, and divided them; till the intrepid band, conquered by the strength of nature and of man, took to flight, leaving a hundred dead upon the field. To Germans had Gustavus yielded this post of honour. Exasperated at their retreat, he now led on his Finlanders to the attack, thinking, by their northern courage, to shame the cowardice of the Germans. But they, also, after a similar hot reception, yielded to the superiority of the enemy; and a third regiment succeeded them to experience the same fate. This was replaced by a fourth, a fifth, and a sixth; so that, during a ten hours' action, every regiment was brought to the attack to retire with bloody loss from the contest. A thousand mangled bodies covered the field; yet Gustavus undauntedly maintained the attack, and Wallenstein held his position unshaken.

In the mean time, a sharp contest had taken place between the imperial cavalry and the left wing of the Swedes, which was posted in a thicket on the Rednitz, with varying success, but with equal intrepidity and loss on both sides. The Duke of Friedland and Prince Bernard of Weimar had each a horse shot under them; the king himself had the sole of his boot carried off by a cannon ball. The combat was maintained with undiminished obstinacy, till the approach of night separated the combatants. But the Swedes had advanced too far to retreat without hazard. While the king was seeking an officer to convey to the regiments the order to retreat, he met Colonel Hepburn, a brave Scotchman, whose native courage alone had drawn him from the camp to share in the dangers of the day. Offended with the king for having not long before preferred a younger officer for some post of danger, he had rashly vowed never again to draw his sword for the king. To him Gustavus now addressed himself, praising his courage, and requesting him to order the regiments to retreat. "Sire," replied the brave soldier, "it is the only service I cannot refuse to your Majesty; for it is a hazardous one,"—and immediately hastened to carry the command. One of the heights above the old fortress had, in the heat of the action, been carried by the Duke of Weimar. It commanded the hills and the whole camp. But the heavy rain which fell during the night, rendered it impossible to draw up the cannon; and this post, which had been gained with so much bloodshed, was also voluntarily abandoned. Diffident of fortune, which forsook him on this decisive day, the king did not venture the following morning to renew the attack with his exhausted troops; and vanquished for the first time, even because he was not victor, he led back his troops over the Rednitz. Two thousand dead which he left behind him on the field, testified to the extent of his loss; and the Duke of Friedland remained unconquered within his lines.

For fourteen days after this action, the two armies still continued in front of each other, each in the hope that the other would be the first to give way. Every day reduced their provisions, and as scarcity became greater, the excesses of the soldiers rendered furious, exercised the wildest outrages on the peasantry. The increasing distress broke up all discipline and order in the Swedish camp; and the German regiments, in particular, distinguished themselves for the ravages they practised indiscriminately on friend and foe. The weak hand of a single individual could not check excesses, encouraged by the silence, if not the actual example, of the inferior officers. These shameful breaches of discipline, on the maintenance of which he had hitherto justly prided himself, severely pained the king; and the vehemence with which he reproached the German officers for their negligence, bespoke the liveliness of his emotion. "It is you yourselves, Germans," said he, "that rob your native country, and ruin your own confederates in the faith. As God is my judge, I abhor you, I loathe you; my heart sinks within me whenever I look upon you. Ye break my orders; ye are the cause that the world curses me, that the tears of poverty follow me, that complaints ring in my ear—'The king, our friend, does us more harm than even our worst enemies.' On your account I have stripped my own kingdom of its treasures, and spent upon you more than 40 tons of gold; —[A ton of gold in Sweden amounts to 100,000 rix dollars.]—while from your German empire I have not received the least aid. I gave you a share of all that God had given to me; and had ye regarded my orders, I would have gladly shared with you all my future acquisitions. Your want of discipline convinces me of your evil intentions, whatever cause I might otherwise have to applaud your bravery."

Nuremberg had exerted itself, almost beyond its power, to subsist for eleven weeks the vast crowd which was compressed within its boundaries; but its means were at length exhausted, and the king's more numerous party was obliged to determine on a retreat. By the casualties of war and sickness, Nuremberg had lost more than 10,000 of its inhabitants, and Gustavus Adolphus nearly 20,000 of his soldiers. The fields around the city were trampled down, the villages lay in ashes, the plundered peasantry lay faint and dying on the highways; foul odours infected the air, and bad food, the exhalations from so dense a population, and so many putrifying carcasses, together with the heat of the dog-days, produced a desolating pestilence which raged among men and beasts, and long after the retreat of both armies, continued to load the country with misery and distress. Affected by the general distress, and despairing of conquering the steady determination of the Duke of Friedland, the king broke up his camp on the 8th September, leaving in Nuremberg a sufficient garrison. He advanced in full order of battle before the enemy, who remained motionless, and did not attempt in the least to harass his retreat. His route lay by the Aisch and Windsheim towards Neustadt, where he halted five days to refresh his troops, and also to be near to Nuremberg, in case the enemy should make an attempt upon the town. But Wallenstein, as exhausted as himself, had only awaited the retreat of the Swedes to commence his own. Five days afterwards, he broke up his camp at Zirndorf, and set it on fire. A hundred columns of smoke, rising from all the burning villages in the neighbourhood, announced his retreat, and showed the city the fate it had escaped. His march, which was directed on Forchheim, was marked by the most frightful ravages; but he was too far advanced to be overtaken by the king. The latter now divided his army, which the exhausted country was unable to support, and leaving one division to protect Franconia, with the other he prosecuted in person his conquests in Bavaria.

In the mean time, the imperial Bavarian army had marched into the Bishopric of Bamberg, where the Duke of Friedland a second time mustered his troops. He found this force, which so lately had amounted to 60,000 men, diminished by the sword, desertion, and disease, to about 24,000, and of these a fourth were Bavarians. Thus had the encampments before Nuremberg weakened both parties more than two great battles would have done, apparently without advancing the termination of the war, or satisfying, by any decisive result, the expectations of Europe. The king's conquests in Bavaria, were, it is true, checked for a time by this diversion before Nuremberg, and Austria itself secured against the danger of immediate invasion; but by the retreat of the king from that city, he was again left at full liberty to make Bavaria the seat of war. Indifferent towards the fate of that country, and weary of the restraint which his union with the Elector imposed upon him, the Duke of Friedland eagerly seized the opportunity of separating from this burdensome associate, and prosecuting, with renewed earnestness, his favourite plans. Still adhering to his purpose of detaching Saxony from its Swedish alliance, he selected that country for his winter quarters, hoping by his destructive presence to force the Elector the more readily into his views.

No conjuncture could be more favourable for his designs. The Saxons had invaded Silesia, where, reinforced by troops from Brandenburgh and Sweden, they had gained several advantages over the Emperor's troops. Silesia would be saved by a diversion against the Elector in his own territories, and the attempt was the more easy, as Saxony, left undefended during the war in Silesia, lay open on every side to attack. The pretext of rescuing from the enemy an hereditary dominion of Austria, would silence the remonstrances of the Elector of Bavaria, and, under the mask of a patriotic zeal for the Emperor's interests, Maximilian might be sacrificed without much difficulty. By giving up the rich country of Bavaria to the Swedes, he hoped to be left unmolested by them in his enterprise against Saxony, while the increasing coldness between Gustavus and the Saxon Court, gave him little reason to apprehend any extraordinary zeal for the deliverance of John George. Thus a second time abandoned by his artful protector, the Elector separated from Wallenstein at Bamberg, to protect his defenceless territory with the small remains of his troops, while the imperial army, under Wallenstein, directed its march through Bayreuth and Coburg towards the Thuringian Forest.

An imperial general, Holk, had previously been sent into Vogtland with 6,000 men, to waste this defenceless province with fire and sword, he was soon followed by Gallas, another of the Duke's generals, and an equally faithful instrument of his inhuman orders. Finally, Pappenheim, too, was recalled from Lower Saxony, to reinforce the diminished army of the duke, and to complete the miseries of the devoted country. Ruined churches, villages in ashes, harvests wilfully destroyed, families plundered, and murdered peasants, marked the progress of these barbarians, under whose scourge the whole of Thuringia, Vogtland, and Meissen, lay defenceless. Yet this was but the prelude to greater sufferings, with which Wallenstein himself, at the head of the main army, threatened Saxony. After having left behind him fearful monuments of his fury, in his march through Franconia and Thuringia, he arrived with his whole army in the Circle of Leipzig, and compelled the city, after a short resistance, to surrender. His design was to push on to Dresden, and by the conquest of the whole country, to prescribe laws to the Elector. He had already approached the Mulda, threatening to overpower the Saxon army which had advanced as far as Torgau to meet him, when the King of Sweden's arrival at Erfurt gave an unexpected check to his operations. Placed between the Saxon and Swedish armies, which were likely to be farther reinforced by the troops of George, Duke of Luneburg, from Lower Saxony, he hastily retired upon Meresberg, to form a junction there with Count Pappenheim, and to repel the further advance of the Swedes.

Gustavus Adolphus had witnessed, with great uneasiness, the arts employed by Spain and Austria to detach his allies from him. The more important his alliance with Saxony, the more anxiety the inconstant temper of John George caused him. Between himself and the Elector, a sincere friendship could never subsist. A prince, proud of his political importance, and accustomed to consider himself as the head of his party, could not see without annoyance the interference of a foreign power in the affairs of the Empire; and nothing, but the extreme danger of his dominions, could overcome the aversion with which he had long witnessed the progress of this unwelcome intruder. The increasing influence of the king in Germany, his authority with the Protestant states, the unambiguous proofs which he gave of his ambitious views, which were of a character calculated to excite the jealousies of all the states of the Empire, awakened in the Elector's breast a thousand anxieties, which the imperial emissaries did not fail skilfully to keep alive and cherish. Every arbitrary step on the part of the King, every demand, however reasonable, which he addressed to the princes of the Empire, was followed by bitter complaints from the Elector, which seemed to announce an approaching rupture. Even the generals of the two powers, whenever they were called upon to act in common, manifested the same jealousy as divided their leaders. John George's natural aversion to war, and a lingering attachment to Austria, favoured the efforts of Arnheim; who, maintaining a constant correspondence with Wallenstein, laboured incessantly to effect a private treaty between his master and the Emperor; and if his representations were long disregarded, still the event proved that they were not altogether without effect.

Gustavus Adolphus, naturally apprehensive of the consequences which the defection of so powerful an ally would produce on his future prospects in Germany, spared no pains to avert so pernicious an event; and his remonstrances had hitherto had some effect upon the Elector. But the formidable power with which the Emperor seconded his seductive proposals, and the miseries which, in the case of hesitation, he threatened to accumulate upon Saxony, might at length overcome the resolution of the Elector, should he be left exposed to the vengeance of his enemies; while an indifference to the fate of so powerful a confederate, would irreparably destroy the confidence of the other allies in their protector. This consideration induced the king a second time to yield to the pressing entreaties of the Elector, and to sacrifice his own brilliant prospects to the safety of this ally. He had already resolved upon a second attack on Ingoldstadt; and the weakness of the Elector of Bavaria gave him hopes of soon forcing this exhausted enemy to accede to a neutrality. An insurrection of the peasantry in Upper Austria, opened to him a passage into that country, and the capital might be in his possession, before Wallenstein could have time to advance to its defence. All these views he now gave up for the sake of an ally, who, neither by his services nor his fidelity, was worthy of the sacrifice; who, on the pressing occasions of common good, had steadily adhered to his own selfish projects; and who was important, not for the services he was expected to render, but merely for the injuries he had it in his power to inflict. Is it possible, then, to refrain from indignation, when we know that, in this expedition, undertaken for the benefit of such an ally, the great king was destined to terminate his career?

Rapidly assembling his troops in Franconia, he followed the route of Wallenstein through Thuringia. Duke Bernard of Weimar, who had been despatched to act against Pappenheim, joined the king at Armstadt, who now saw himself at the head of 20,000 veterans. At Erfurt he took leave of his queen, who was not to behold him, save in his coffin, at Weissenfels. Their anxious adieus seemed to forbode an eternal separation.

He reached Naumburg on the 1st November, 1632, before the corps, which the Duke of Friedland had despatched for that purpose, could make itself master of that place. The inhabitants of the surrounding country flocked in crowds to look upon the hero, the avenger, the great king, who, a year before, had first appeared in that quarter, like a guardian angel. Shouts of joy everywhere attended his progress; the people knelt before him, and struggled for the honour of touching the sheath of his sword, or the hem of his garment. The modest hero disliked this innocent tribute which a sincerely grateful and admiring multitude paid him. "Is it not," said he, "as if this people would make a God of me? Our affairs prosper, indeed; but I fear the vengeance of Heaven will punish me for this presumption, and soon enough reveal to this deluded multitude my human weakness and mortality!" How amiable does Gustavus appear before us at this moment, when about to leave us for ever! Even in the plenitude of success, he honours an avenging Nemesis, declines that homage which is due only to the Immortal, and strengthens his title to our tears, the nearer the moment approaches that is to call them forth!

In the mean time, the Duke of Friedland had determined to advance to meet the king, as far as Weissenfels, and even at the hazard of a battle, to secure his winter-quarters in Saxony. His inactivity before Nuremberg had occasioned a suspicion that he was unwilling to measure his powers with those of the Hero of the North, and his hard-earned reputation would be at stake, if, a second time, he should decline a battle. His present superiority in numbers, though much less than what it was at the beginning of the siege of Nuremberg, was still enough to give him hopes of victory, if he could compel the king to give battle before his junction with the Saxons. But his present reliance was not so much in his numerical superiority, as in the predictions of his astrologer Seni, who had read in the stars that the good fortune of the Swedish monarch would decline in the month of November. Besides, between Naumburg and Weissenfels there was also a range of narrow defiles, formed by a long mountainous ridge, and the river Saal, which ran at their foot, along which the Swedes could not advance without difficulty, and which might, with the assistance of a few troops, be rendered almost impassable. If attacked there, the king would have no choice but either to penetrate with great danger through the defiles, or commence a laborious retreat through Thuringia, and to expose the greater part of his army to a march through a desert country, deficient in every necessary for their support. But the rapidity with which Gustavus Adolphus had taken possession of Naumburg, disappointed this plan, and it was now Wallenstein himself who awaited the attack.

But in this expectation he was disappointed; for the king, instead of advancing to meet him at Weissenfels, made preparations for entrenching himself near Naumburg, with the intention of awaiting there the reinforcements which the Duke of Lunenburg was bringing up. Undecided whether to advance against the king through the narrow passes between Weissenfels and Naumburg, or to remain inactive in his camp, he called a council of war, in order to have the opinion of his most experienced generals. None of these thought it prudent to attack the king in his advantageous position. On the other hand, the preparations which the latter made to fortify his camp, plainly showed that it was not his intention soon to abandon it. But the approach of winter rendered it impossible to prolong the campaign, and by a continued encampment to exhaust the strength of the army, already so much in need of repose. All voices were in favour of immediately terminating the campaign: and, the more so, as the important city of Cologne upon the Rhine was threatened by the Dutch, while the progress of the enemy in Westphalia and the Lower Rhine called for effective reinforcements in that quarter. Wallenstein yielded to the weight of these arguments, and almost convinced that, at this season, he had no reason to apprehend an attack from the King, he put his troops into winter-quarters, but so that, if necessary, they might be rapidly assembled. Count Pappenheim was despatched, with great part of the army, to the assistance of Cologne, with orders to take possession, on his march, of the fortress of Moritzburg, in the territory of Halle. Different corps took up their winter-quarters in the neighbouring towns, to watch, on all sides, the motions of the enemy. Count Colloredo guarded the castle of Weissenfels, and Wallenstein himself encamped with the remainder not far from Merseburg, between Flotzgaben and the Saal, from whence he purposed to march to Leipzig, and to cut off the communication between the Saxons and the Swedish army.

Scarcely had Gustavus Adolphus been informed of Pappenheim's departure, when suddenly breaking up his camp at Naumburg, he hastened with his whole force to attack the enemy, now weakened to one half. He advanced, by rapid marches, towards Weissenfels, from whence the news of his arrival quickly reached the enemy, and greatly astonished the Duke of Friedland. But a speedy resolution was now necessary; and the measures of Wallenstein were soon taken. Though he had little more than 12,000 men to oppose to the 20,000 of the enemy, he might hope to maintain his ground until the return of Pappenheim, who could not have advanced farther than Halle, five miles distant. Messengers were hastily despatched to recall him, while Wallenstein moved forward into the wide plain between the Canal and Lutzen, where he awaited the King in full order of battle, and, by this position, cut off his communication with Leipzig and the Saxon auxiliaries.

Three cannon shots, fired by Count Colloredo from the castle of Weissenfels, announced the king's approach; and at this concerted signal, the light troops of the Duke of Friedland, under the command of the Croatian General Isolani, moved forward to possess themselves of the villages lying upon the Rippach. Their weak resistance did not impede the advance of the enemy, who crossed the Rippach, near the village of that name, and formed in line below Lutzen, opposite the Imperialists. The high road which goes from Weissenfels to Leipzig, is intersected between Lutzen and Markranstadt by the canal which extends from Zeitz to Merseburg, and unites the Elster with the Saal. On this canal, rested the left wing of the Imperialists, and the right of the King of Sweden; but so that the cavalry of both extended themselves along the opposite side. To the northward, behind Lutzen, was Wallenstein's right wing, and to the south of that town was posted the left wing of the Swedes; both armies fronted the high road, which ran between them, and divided their order of battle; but the evening before the battle, Wallenstein, to the great disadvantage of his opponent, had possessed himself of this highway, deepened the trenches which ran along its sides, and planted them with musketeers, so as to make the crossing of it both difficult and dangerous. Behind these, again, was erected a battery of seven large pieces of cannon, to support the fire from the trenches; and at the windmills, close behind Lutzen, fourteen smaller field pieces were ranged on an eminence, from which they could sweep the greater part of the plain. The infantry, divided into no more than five unwieldy brigades, was drawn up at the distance of 300 paces from the road, and the cavalry covered the flanks. All the baggage was sent to Leipzig, that it might not impede the movements of the army; and the ammunition-waggons alone remained, which were placed in rear of the line. To conceal the weakness of the Imperialists, all the camp-followers and sutlers were mounted, and posted on the left wing, but only until Pappenheim's troops arrived. These arrangements were made during the darkness of the night; and when the morning dawned, all was ready for the reception of the enemy.

On the evening of the same day, Gustavus Adolphus appeared on the opposite plain, and formed his troops in the order of attack. His disposition was the same as that which had been so successful the year before at Leipzig. Small squadrons of horse were interspersed among the divisions of the infantry, and troops of musketeers placed here and there among the cavalry. The army was arranged in two lines, the canal on the right and in its rear, the high road in front, and the town on the left. In the centre, the infantry was formed, under the command of Count Brahe; the cavalry on the wings; the artillery in front. To the German hero, Bernard, Duke of Weimar, was intrusted the command of the German cavalry of the left wing; while, on the right, the king led on the Swedes in person, in order to excite the emulation of the two nations to a noble competition. The second line was formed in the same manner; and behind these was placed the reserve, commanded by Henderson, a Scotchman.

In this position, they awaited the eventful dawn of morning, to begin a contest, which long delay, rather than the probability of decisive consequences, and the picked body, rather than the number of the combatants, was to render so terrible and remarkable. The strained expectation of Europe, so disappointed before Nuremberg, was now to be gratified on the plains of Lutzen. During the whole course of the war, two such generals, so equally matched in renown and ability, had not before been pitted against each other. Never, as yet, had daring been cooled by so awful a hazard, or hope animated by so glorious a prize. Europe was next day to learn who was her greatest general:—to-morrow, the leader, who had hitherto been invincible, must acknowledge a victor. This morning was to place it beyond a doubt, whether the victories of Gustavus at Leipzig and on the Lech, were owing to his own military genius, or to the incompetency of his opponent; whether the services of Wallenstein were to vindicate the Emperor's choice, and justify the high price at which they had been purchased. The victory was as yet doubtful, but certain were the labour and the bloodshed by which it must be earned. Every private in both armies, felt a jealous share in their leader's reputation, and under every corslet beat the same emotions that inflamed the bosoms of the generals. Each army knew the enemy to which it was to be opposed: and the anxiety which each in vain attempted to repress, was a convincing proof of their opponent's strength.

At last the fateful morning dawned; but an impenetrable fog, which spread over the plain, delayed the attack till noon. Kneeling in front of his lines, the king offered up his devotions; and the whole army, at the same moment dropping on their knees, burst into a moving hymn, accompanied by the military music. The king then mounted his horse, and clad only in a leathern doublet and surtout, (for a wound he had formerly received prevented his wearing armour,) rode along the ranks, to animate the courage of his troops with a joyful confidence, which, however, the forboding presentiment of his own bosom contradicted. "God with us!" was the war-cry of the Swedes; "Jesus Maria!" that of the Imperialists. About eleven the fog began to disperse, and the enemy became visible. At the same moment Lutzen was seen in flames, having been set on fire by command of the duke, to prevent his being outflanked on that side. The charge was now sounded; the cavalry rushed upon the enemy, and the infantry advanced against the trenches.

Received by a tremendous fire of musketry and heavy artillery, these intrepid battalions maintained the attack with undaunted courage, till the enemy's musketeers abandoned their posts, the trenches were passed, the battery carried and turned against the enemy. They pressed forward with irresistible impetuosity; the first of the five imperial brigades was immediately routed, the second soon after, and the third put to flight. But here the genius of Wallenstein opposed itself to their progress. With the rapidity of lightning he was on the spot to rally his discomfited troops; and his powerful word was itself sufficient to stop the flight of the fugitives. Supported by three regiments of cavalry, the vanquished brigades, forming anew, faced the enemy, and pressed vigorously into the broken ranks of the Swedes. A murderous conflict ensued. The nearness of the enemy left no room for fire-arms, the fury of the attack no time for loading; man was matched to man, the useless musket exchanged for the sword and pike, and science gave way to desperation. Overpowered by numbers, the wearied Swedes at last retire beyond the trenches; and the captured battery is again lost by the retreat. A thousand mangled bodies already strewed the plain, and as yet not a single step of ground had been won.

In the mean time, the king's right wing, led by himself, had fallen upon the enemy's left. The first impetuous shock of the heavy Finland cuirassiers dispersed the lightly-mounted Poles and Croats, who were posted here, and their disorderly flight spread terror and confusion among the rest of the cavalry. At this moment notice was brought the king, that his infantry were retreating over the trenches, and also that his left wing, exposed to a severe fire from the enemy's cannon posted at the windmills was beginning to give way. With rapid decision he committed to General Horn the pursuit of the enemy's left, while he flew, at the head of the regiment of Steinbock, to repair the disorder of his right wing. His noble charger bore him with the velocity of lightning across the trenches, but the squadrons that followed could not come on with the same speed, and only a few horsemen, among whom was Francis Albert, Duke of Saxe Lauenburg, were able to keep up with the king. He rode directly to the place where his infantry were most closely pressed, and while he was reconnoitring the enemy's line for an exposed point of attack, the shortness of his sight unfortunately led him too close to their ranks. An imperial Gefreyter,—[A person exempt from watching duty, nearly corresponding to the corporal.]—remarking that every one respectfully made way for him as he rode along, immediately ordered a musketeer to take aim at him. "Fire at him yonder," said he, "that must be a man of consequence." The soldier fired, and the king's left arm was shattered. At that moment his squadron came hurrying up, and a confused cry of "the king bleeds! the king is shot!" spread terror and consternation through all the ranks. "It is nothing—follow me," cried the king, collecting his whole strength; but overcome by pain, and nearly fainting, he requested the Duke of Lauenburg, in French, to lead him unobserved out of the tumult. While the duke proceeded towards the right wing with the king, making a long circuit to keep this discouraging sight from the disordered infantry, his majesty received a second shot through the back, which deprived him of his remaining strength. "Brother," said he, with a dying voice, "I have enough! look only to your own life." At the same moment he fell from his horse pierced by several more shots; and abandoned by all his attendants, he breathed his last amidst the plundering hands of the Croats. His charger, flying without its rider, and covered with blood, soon made known to the Swedish cavalry the fall of their king. They rushed madly forward to rescue his sacred remains from the hands of the enemy. A murderous conflict ensued over the body, till his mangled remains were buried beneath a heap of slain.

The mournful tidings soon ran through the Swedish army; but instead of destroying the courage of these brave troops, it but excited it into a new, a wild, and consuming flame. Life had lessened in value, now that the most sacred life of all was gone; death had no terrors for the lowly since the anointed head was not spared. With the fury of lions the Upland, Smaeland, Finland, East and West Gothland regiments rushed a second time upon the left wing of the enemy, which, already making but feeble resistance to General Horn, was now entirely beaten from the field. Bernard, Duke of Saxe-Weimar, gave to the bereaved Swedes a noble leader in his own person; and the spirit of Gustavus led his victorious squadrons anew. The left wing quickly formed again, and vigorously pressed the right of the Imperialists. The artillery at the windmills, which had maintained so murderous a fire upon the Swedes, was captured and turned against the enemy. The centre, also, of the Swedish infantry, commanded by the duke and Knyphausen, advanced a second time against the trenches, which they successfully passed, and retook the battery of seven cannons. The attack was now renewed with redoubled fury upon the heavy battalions of the enemy's centre; their resistance became gradually less, and chance conspired with Swedish valour to complete the defeat. The imperial powder-waggons took fire, and, with a tremendous explosion, grenades and bombs filled the air. The enemy, now in confusion, thought they were attacked in the rear, while the Swedish brigades pressed them in front. Their courage began to fail them. Their left wing was already beaten, their right wavering, and their artillery in the enemy's hands. The battle seemed to be almost decided; another moment would decide the fate of the day, when Pappenheim appeared on the field, with his cuirassiers and dragoons; all the advantages already gained were lost, and the battle was to be fought anew.

The order which recalled that general to Lutzen had reached him in Halle, while his troops were still plundering the town. It was impossible to collect the scattered infantry with that rapidity, which the urgency of the order, and Pappenheim's impatience required. Without waiting for it, therefore, he ordered eight regiments of cavalry to mount; and at their head he galloped at full speed for Lutzen, to share in the battle. He arrived in time to witness the flight of the imperial right wing, which Gustavus Horn was driving from the field, and to be at first involved in their rout. But with rapid presence of mind he rallied the flying troops, and led them once more against the enemy. Carried away by his wild bravery, and impatient to encounter the king, who he supposed was at the head of this wing, he burst furiously upon the Swedish ranks, which, exhausted by victory, and inferior in numbers, were, after a noble resistance, overpowered by this fresh body of enemies. Pappenheim's unexpected appearance revived the drooping courage of the Imperialists, and the Duke of Friedland quickly availed himself of the favourable moment to re-form his line. The closely serried battalions of the Swedes were, after a tremendous conflict, again driven across the trenches; and the battery, which had been twice lost, again rescued from their hands. The whole yellow regiment, the finest of all that distinguished themselves in this dreadful day, lay dead on the field, covering the ground almost in the same excellent order which, when alive, they maintained with such unyielding courage. The same fate befel another regiment of Blues, which Count Piccolomini attacked with the imperial cavalry, and cut down after a desperate contest. Seven times did this intrepid general renew the attack; seven horses were shot under him, and he himself was pierced with six musket balls; yet he would not leave the field, until he was carried along in the general rout of the whole army. Wallenstein himself was seen riding through his ranks with cool intrepidity, amidst a shower of balls, assisting the distressed, encouraging the valiant with praise, and the wavering by his fearful glance. Around and close by him his men were falling thick, and his own mantle was perforated by several shots. But avenging destiny this day protected that breast, for which another weapon was reserved; on the same field where the noble Gustavus expired, Wallenstein was not allowed to terminate his guilty career.

Less fortunate was Pappenheim, the Telamon of the army, the bravest soldier of Austria and the church. An ardent desire to encounter the king in person, carried this daring leader into the thickest of the fight, where he thought his noble opponent was most surely to be met. Gustavus had also expressed a wish to meet his brave antagonist, but these hostile wishes remained ungratified; death first brought together these two great heroes. Two musket-balls pierced the breast of Pappenheim; and his men forcibly carried him from the field. While they were conveying him to the rear, a murmur reached him, that he whom he had sought, lay dead upon the plain. When the truth of the report was confirmed to him, his look became brighter, his dying eye sparkled with a last gleam of joy. "Tell the Duke of Friedland," said he, "that I lie without hope of life, but that I die happy, since I know that the implacable enemy of my religion has fallen on the same day."

With Pappenheim, the good fortune of the Imperialists departed. The cavalry of the left wing, already beaten, and only rallied by his exertions, no sooner missed their victorious leader, than they gave up everything for lost, and abandoned the field of battle in spiritless despair. The right wing fell into the same confusion, with the exception of a few regiments, which the bravery of their colonels Gotz, Terzky, Colloredo, and Piccolomini, compelled to keep their ground. The Swedish infantry, with prompt determination, profited by the enemy's confusion. To fill up the gaps which death had made in the front line, they formed both lines into one, and with it made the final and decisive charge. A third time they crossed the trenches, and a third time they captured the battery. The sun was setting when the two lines closed. The strife grew hotter as it drew to an end; the last efforts of strength were mutually exerted, and skill and courage did their utmost to repair in these precious moments the fortune of the day. It was in vain; despair endows every one with superhuman strength; no one can conquer, no one will give way. The art of war seemed to exhaust its powers on one side, only to unfold some new and untried masterpiece of skill on the other. Night and darkness at last put an end to the fight, before the fury of the combatants was exhausted; and the contest only ceased, when no one could any longer find an antagonist. Both armies separated, as if by tacit agreement; the trumpets sounded, and each party claiming the victory, quitted the field.

The artillery on both sides, as the horses could not be found, remained all night upon the field, at once the reward and the evidence of victory to him who should hold it. Wallenstein, in his haste to leave Leipzig and Saxony, forgot to remove his part. Not long after the battle was ended, Pappenheim's infantry, who had been unable to follow the rapid movements of their general, and who amounted to six regiments, marched on the field, but the work was done. A few hours earlier, so considerable a reinforcement would perhaps have decided the day in favour of the Imperialists; and, even now, by remaining on the field, they might have saved the duke's artillery, and made a prize of that of the Swedes. But they had received no orders to act; and, uncertain as to the issue of the battle, they retired to Leipzig, where they hoped to join the main body.

The Duke of Friedland had retreated thither, and was followed on the morrow by the scattered remains of his army, without artillery, without colours, and almost without arms. The Duke of Weimar, it appears, after the toils of this bloody day, allowed the Swedish army some repose, between Lutzen and Weissenfels, near enough to the field of battle to oppose any attempt the enemy might make to recover it. Of the two armies, more than 9,000 men lay dead; a still greater number were wounded, and among the Imperialists, scarcely a man escaped from the field uninjured. The entire plain from Lutzen to the Canal was strewed with the wounded, the dying, and the dead. Many of the principal nobility had fallen on both sides. Even the Abbot of Fulda, who had mingled in the combat as a spectator, paid for his curiosity and his ill-timed zeal with his life. History says nothing of prisoners; a further proof of the animosity of the combatants, who neither gave nor took quarter.

Pappenheim died the next day of his wounds at Leipzig; an irreparable loss to the imperial army, which this brave warrior had so often led on to victory. The battle of Prague, where, together with Wallenstein, he was present as colonel, was the beginning of his heroic career. Dangerously wounded, with a few troops, he made an impetuous attack on a regiment of the enemy, and lay for several hours mixed with the dead upon the field, beneath the weight of his horse, till he was discovered by some of his own men in plundering. With a small force he defeated, in three different engagements, the rebels in Upper Austria, though 40,000 strong. At the battle of Leipzig, he for a long time delayed the defeat of Tilly by his bravery, and led the arms of the Emperor on the Elbe and the Weser to victory. The wild impetuous fire of his temperament, which no danger, however apparent, could cool, or impossibilities check, made him the most powerful arm of the imperial force, but unfitted him for acting at its head. The battle of Leipzig, if Tilly may be believed, was lost through his rash ardour. At the destruction of Magdeburg, his hands were deeply steeped in blood; war rendered savage and ferocious his disposition, which had been cultivated by youthful studies and various travels. On his forehead, two red streaks, like swords, were perceptible, with which nature had marked him at his very birth. Even in his later years, these became visible, as often as his blood was stirred by passion; and superstition easily persuaded itself, that the future destiny of the man was thus impressed upon the forehead of the child. As a faithful servant of the House of Austria, he had the strongest claims on the gratitude of both its lines, but he did not survive to enjoy the most brilliant proof of their regard. A messenger was already on his way from Madrid, bearing to him the order of the Golden Fleece, when death overtook him at Leipzig.

Though Te Deum, in all Spanish and Austrian lands, was sung in honour of a victory, Wallenstein himself, by the haste with which he quitted Leipzig, and soon after all Saxony, and by renouncing his original design of fixing there his winter quarters, openly confessed his defeat. It is true he made one more feeble attempt to dispute, even in his flight, the honour of victory, by sending out his Croats next morning to the field; but the sight of the Swedish army drawn up in order of battle, immediately dispersed these flying bands, and Duke Bernard, by keeping possession of the field, and soon after by the capture of Leipzig, maintained indisputably his claim to the title of victor.

But it was a dear conquest, a dearer triumph! It was not till the fury of the contest was over, that the full weight of the loss sustained was felt, and the shout of triumph died away into a silent gloom of despair. He, who had led them to the charge, returned not with them; there he lay upon the field which he had won, mingled with the dead bodies of the common crowd. After a long and almost fruitless search, the corpse of the king was discovered, not far from the great stone, which, for a hundred years before, had stood between Lutzen and the Canal, and which, from the memorable disaster of that day, still bears the name of the Stone of the Swede. Covered with blood and wounds, so as scarcely to be recognised, trampled beneath the horses' hoofs, stripped by the rude hands of plunderers of its ornaments and clothes, his body was drawn from beneath a heap of dead, conveyed to Weissenfels, and there delivered up to the lamentations of his soldiers, and the last embraces of his queen. The first tribute had been paid to revenge, and blood had atoned for the blood of the monarch; but now affection assumes its rights, and tears of grief must flow for the man. The universal sorrow absorbs all individual woes. The generals, still stupefied by the unexpected blow, stood speechless and motionless around his bier, and no one trusted himself enough to contemplate the full extent of their loss.

The Emperor, we are told by Khevenhuller, showed symptoms of deep, and apparently sincere feeling, at the sight of the king's doublet stained with blood, which had been stripped from him during the battle, and carried to Vienna. "Willingly," said he, "would I have granted to the unfortunate prince a longer life, and a safe return to his kingdom, had Germany been at peace." But when a trait, which is nothing more than a proof of a yet lingering humanity, and which a mere regard to appearances and even self-love, would have extorted from the most insensible, and the absence of which could exist only in the most inhuman heart, has, by a Roman Catholic writer of modern times and acknowledged merit, been made the subject of the highest eulogium, and compared with the magnanimous tears of Alexander, for the fall of Darius, our distrust is excited of the other virtues of the writer's hero, and what is still worse, of his own ideas of moral dignity. But even such praise, whatever its amount, is much for one, whose memory his biographer has to clear from the suspicion of being privy to the assassination of a king.

It was scarcely to be expected, that the strong leaning of mankind to the marvellous, would leave to the common course of nature the glory of ending the career of Gustavus Adolphus. The death of so formidable a rival was too important an event for the Emperor, not to excite in his bitter opponent a ready suspicion, that what was so much to his interests, was also the result of his instigation. For the execution, however, of this dark deed, the Emperor would require the aid of a foreign arm, and this it was generally believed he had found in Francis Albert, Duke of Saxe Lauenburg. The rank of the latter permitted him a free access to the king's person, while it at the same time seemed to place him above the suspicion of so foul a deed. This prince, however, was in fact not incapable of this atrocity, and he had moreover sufficient motives for its commission.

Francis Albert, the youngest of four sons of Francis II, Duke of Lauenburg, and related by the mother's side to the race of Vasa, had, in his early years, found a most friendly reception at the Swedish court. Some offence which he had committed against Gustavus Adolphus, in the queen's chamber, was, it is said, repaid by this fiery youth with a box on the ear; which, though immediately repented of, and amply apologized for, laid the foundation of an irreconcileable hate in the vindictive heart of the duke. Francis Albert subsequently entered the imperial service, where he rose to the command of a regiment, and formed a close intimacy with Wallenstein, and condescended to be the instrument of a secret negociation with the Saxon court, which did little honour to his rank. Without any sufficient cause being assigned, he suddenly quitted the Austrian service, and appeared in the king's camp at Nuremberg, to offer his services as a volunteer. By his show of zeal for the Protestant cause, and prepossessing and flattering deportment, he gained the heart of the king, who, warned in vain by Oxenstiern, continued to lavish his favour and friendship on this suspicious new comer. The battle of Lutzen soon followed, in which Francis Albert, like an evil genius, kept close to the king's side and did not leave him till he fell. He owed, it was thought, his own safety amidst the fire of the enemy, to a green sash which he wore, the colour of the Imperialists. He was at any rate the first to convey to his friend Wallenstein the intelligence of the king's death. After the battle, he exchanged the Swedish service for the Saxon; and, after the murder of Wallenstein, being charged with being an accomplice of that general, he only escaped the sword of justice by abjuring his faith. His last appearance in life was as commander of an imperial army in Silesia, where he died of the wounds he had received before Schweidnitz. It requires some effort to believe in the innocence of a man, who had run through a career like this, of the act charged against him; but, however great may be the moral and physical possibility of his committing such a crime, it must still be allowed that there are no certain grounds for imputing it to him. Gustavus Adolphus, it is well known, exposed himself to danger, like the meanest soldier in his army, and where thousands fell, he, too, might naturally meet his death. How it reached him, remains indeed buried in mystery; but here, more than anywhere, does the maxim apply, that where the ordinary course of things is fully sufficient to account for the fact, the honour of human nature ought not to be stained by any suspicion of moral atrocity.

But by whatever hand he fell, his extraordinary destiny must appear a great interposition of Providence. History, too often confined to the ungrateful task of analyzing the uniform play of human passions, is occasionally rewarded by the appearance of events, which strike like a hand from heaven, into the nicely adjusted machinery of human plans, and carry the contemplative mind to a higher order of things. Of this kind, is the sudden retirement of Gustavus Adolphus from the scene;—stopping for a time the whole movement of the political machine, and disappointing all the calculations of human prudence. Yesterday, the very soul, the great and animating principle of his own creation; to-day, struck unpitiably to the ground in the very midst of his eagle flight; untimely torn from a whole world of great designs, and from the ripening harvest of his expectations, he left his bereaved party disconsolate; and the proud edifice of his past greatness sunk into ruins. The Protestant party had identified its hopes with its invincible leader, and scarcely can it now separate them from him; with him, they now fear all good fortune is buried. But it was no longer the benefactor of Germany who fell at Lutzen: the beneficent part of his career, Gustavus Adolphus had already terminated; and now the greatest service which he could render to the liberties of Germany was—to die. The all-engrossing power of an individual was at an end, but many came forward to essay their strength; the equivocal assistance of an over-powerful protector, gave place to a more noble self-exertion on the part of the Estates; and those who were formerly the mere instruments of his aggrandizement, now began to work for themselves. They now looked to their own exertions for the emancipation, which could not be received without danger from the hand of the mighty; and the Swedish power, now incapable of sinking into the oppressor, was henceforth restricted to the more modest part of an ally.

The ambition of the Swedish monarch aspired unquestionably to establish a power within Germany, and to attain a firm footing in the centre of the empire, which was inconsistent with the liberties of the Estates. His aim was the imperial crown; and this dignity, supported by his power, and maintained by his energy and activity, would in his hands be liable to more abuse than had ever been feared from the House of Austria. Born in a foreign country, educated in the maxims of arbitrary power, and by principles and enthusiasm a determined enemy to Popery, he was ill qualified to maintain inviolate the constitution of the German States, or to respect their liberties. The coercive homage which Augsburg, with many other cities, was forced to pay to the Swedish crown, bespoke the conqueror, rather than the protector of the empire; and this town, prouder of the title of a royal city, than of the higher dignity of the freedom of the empire, flattered itself with the anticipation of becoming the capital of his future kingdom. His ill-disguised attempts upon the Electorate of Mentz, which he first intended to bestow upon the Elector of Brandenburg, as the dower of his daughter Christina, and afterwards destined for his chancellor and friend Oxenstiern, evinced plainly what liberties he was disposed to take with the constitution of the empire. His allies, the Protestant princes, had claims on his gratitude, which could be satisfied only at the expense of their Roman Catholic neighbours, and particularly of the immediate Ecclesiastical Chapters; and it seems probable a plan was early formed for dividing the conquered provinces, (after the precedent of the barbarian hordes who overran the German empire,) as a common spoil, among the German and Swedish confederates. In his treatment of the Elector Palatine, he entirely belied the magnanimity of the hero, and forgot the sacred character of a protector. The Palatinate was in his hands, and the obligations both of justice and honour demanded its full and immediate restoration to the legitimate sovereign. But, by a subtlety unworthy of a great mind, and disgraceful to the honourable title of protector of the oppressed, he eluded that obligation. He treated the Palatinate as a conquest wrested from the enemy, and thought that this circumstance gave him a right to deal with it as he pleased. He surrendered it to the Elector as a favour, not as a debt; and that, too, as a Swedish fief, fettered by conditions which diminished half its value, and degraded this unfortunate prince into a humble vassal of Sweden. One of these conditions obliged the Elector, after the conclusion of the war, to furnish, along with the other princes, his contribution towards the maintenance of the Swedish army, a condition which plainly indicates the fate which, in the event of the ultimate success of the king, awaited Germany. His sudden disappearance secured the liberties of Germany, and saved his reputation, while it probably spared him the mortification of seeing his own allies in arms against him, and all the fruits of his victories torn from him by a disadvantageous peace. Saxony was already disposed to abandon him, Denmark viewed his success with alarm and jealousy; and even France, the firmest and most potent of his allies, terrified at the rapid growth of his power and the imperious tone which he assumed, looked around at the very moment he past the Lech, for foreign alliances, in order to check the progress of the Goths, and restore to Europe the balance of power.