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An eye-witness thus describes the tactics by which Frederick executed his design: It is a particular man?uvre which, up to the present time, none but Prussian troops can execute with the precision and velocity indispensable to it. You divide your line into many pieces. You can push these forward stair-wise, so that they shall halt close to one another. Forming itself in this way, a mass of troops takes up in proportion very little ground. And it shows in the distance, by reason of the mixed uniforms and standards, a totally chaotic mass of men, heaped one on another. But it needs only that the commander lift his finger, and instantly this living coil of knotted intricacies develops itself in perfect order, and with a speed like that of mountain rivers.112

Soon after this Frederick dispatched a young and impetuous479 officer, General Wedell, invested with dictatorial powers, at the head of twenty-six thousand men, to attack the Russian army, at every hazard, and arrest its march. The heroic little band of Prussians met the Russians at Züllichau. One of General Wedells officers remonstrated against the attack. On the 11th, Brieg was summoned to surrender. The prompt and resolute response was No. The place was found unexpectedly strong, and a gallant little garrison of sixteen hundred men had been assembled behind its walls. Frederick was much annoyed by the delay thus occasioned. He promptly invested the city so as to cut off all supplies, and dispatched an order to Glogau to have the field artillery sent, as speedily as possible, up the Oder to Brieg.

The Austrian army, which outnumbered the Prussian over three to one, was in a camp, very strongly fortified, near Breslau. A council of war was held. Some of the Austrian officers, dreading the prowess of their redoubtable opponent, advised that they should remain behind their intrenchments, and await an attack. It would, of course, be impossible for less than thirty thousand men to storm ramparts bristling with artillery, and defended by nearly ninety thousand highly disciplined and veteran troops.

192 On the 22d of June a complaint was made to the king that the Roman Catholic schools were perverted to seducing Protestants to become Catholics. Frederick returned the complaint with the following words written upon the margin: