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as they were); all hearts then were united in one common German spirit ihrough those misfortunes, in the blame of which each man felt conscious of having a part to bear. Berlin, once so proud and glorious, lay in dust and ashes I went out from my place of concealment, and mingled in the crowd, who with shouting and weeping filled the Linden and the Schloss-platz. I speak of those who wept among others who rejoiced, for more eyes were wet with sorrow than were bright with joy. When the lovely Queen presented herself before the people in the balcony of the palace, we could see in her tear-reddened eyes how deep an anguish mingled with the gladness of her welcome. I looked for Scharnhorst,* and saw him ride slowly past with the other generals, pale and preoccupied, and bending sadly forward in his saddle.'
Though he gives few details of his life in Berlin, beyond mentioning that, despite the multitude of spies, both French and German, busily occupied there, he contrived to associate with a circle of men like-minded with himself, and to practise assiduously, as they did, in rifle and pistol galleries, in the hope of one day turning the skill they thus acquired to the profit of their country, he unquestionably did much towards awakening and spreading the spirit of resistance to that power of Napoleon which only too many Germans were disposed to regard as irresistible. In the Easter of the following year, 1810 (its former Pomeranian territory having been restored to Sweden), Arndt returned to his professorial chair at the University of Greifswald, General von Essen, the Governor, receiving him as if he had spent in England the whole time from his leaving Stockholm.
But it was not with the purpose of remaining there permanently that he resumed his professorship. The man's heart was too deeply engaged in the salvation of his country to allow selfish ease or secure position to tempt him from what he had undertaken as an irresistible duty. Of course, though he does not say so, he was a conspirator. He held too firmly the hopes which he so ardently instilled into others not to be ready to stake his all on any reasonable effort to deliver Germany from its slavery. He recognised too fully what he preached so clearly, that the only prospect of general salvation lay in individual self-sacrifice, to place himself in any situation which might silence his voice or hamper his hand when the great time should come. He went back to his post, as he tells us in touching words,
• With neither the desire nor the hope of retaining it long. Who could
* See in the Poems the two pieces · Der Waffenschmidt der deutschen • Freiheit,' p. 249, and · Scharnhorst der Ehrenbote,' p. 252.
at that time calculate on anything remaining a year or two secure or unchanged ? But two objects were essential to me; first, to make myself a position in an honourable and irreproachable civil capacity, and secondly, to settle iny family affairs. Both of these objects I had secured by the summer of the following year (1811), and then sent in my resignation, packed up my books, papers, and possessions, and betook myself to my old home at Trantow to await events ; ready to fly, if I must fly, or to journey, if my country wanted me.' (Erinnerungen,
We have called these touching words, for the sentence we have underlined implies more than it says; it implies that this true self-sacrificing patriot felt himself more or less at a disadvantage from the very conditions of life which had prepared him to be most useful to his country; that, in fact, at times he felt for himself, and possibly at times was made by others to feel, that his wandering and apparently unsteady course in life was a wrong and a discredit. It became then a part of his purpose, an essential to qualify him, even in the eyes of his own party, for useful and important duties, that he should in some sort remake his character, when already he had reached middle life, and resume his professorial duties to remove suspicions which no doubt were readily heaped upon him by those enemies of his country against whom he had been so outspoken, and from whom, day by day, he went in danger of his life.
The views which Germany held in those years of terrible abasement were by no means as high and as unanimous as those it holds now. Had they been so, Arndt would not have been what he was, or have done what he did. His was an utterance, not a mere reverberation. German unity is the one cry heard to-day; but it was one among very many when the modest simpleminded Arndt threw his whole soul into the task of sounding it in the ears of his compatriots, and even among many who had been his friends at Greifswald, his views met little sympathy. Several of the thrones of Germany were filled by French nominees; hundreds of Germans, and amongst them men as distinguished as John Müller the historian, had willingly accepted office under their conquerors ; the Confederation of the Rhine recognised Napoleon as its Protector; and multitudes of German troops were serving in or with the French armies. No wonder, then, that Arndt took an early opportunity of setting himself free from all official trammels, as we have seen.
Warned by some loyal friends of the watchfulness of the French spies, and the partial discovery of the German secret societies, he hastened to Berlin, where he procured a passport
for Russia (in which country, as he says, 'there was still a • Europe'), providing himself with another passport for the Bohemian baths, to be used in case of need. He was scarcely back a day in Trantow when the alarm came; but we will give in his own words the narrative of his escape from Swedish into Prussian territory :
• A number of us were assembled in a joyous party at the house of the Provost of Loitz, when a mounted messenger brought me a line from my friend Billroth in Greifswald stating that the French had crossed the frontier, and would have the whole country occupied within a day or two. We all separated at once. I drove that very night to Stralsund, which as yet the French had not reached, obtained some money, slept the next night at a friend's house, starting early the following morning by sledge, and, passing on my way several 'detachments of French cavalry, got by sunset to Greifswald, which I found full of French troops. I bid a few farewells there, and, avoiding the high roads, made my way across country to a spot where a sledge of my brother's met me, and brought me back to Trantow that night.
· Arrived at the house I slipped in by a back door and reached a side room from whence, in case of alarm, I could easily escape into the thickly-planted shrubberies and so make my flight good to the woods. A number of French troops, both officers and privates, were billeted in the house; but my brother plied them well with liquor, they were weary and exhausted with long marching over ice and snow, and snored away in quiet repose while I spent the whole night in packing and arranging papers, writing letters, and giving my parting commissions, blessings, and good wishes to my friends. For as long as a man lives, though the death-candle be burnt down low enough to scorch his fingers, he always feels he has something to set in order and arrange. The snow creaked under my footsteps, as with the first streak of dawn I withdrew by the back way from the house; my cousin, my sister, and my little ten years old boy clung closely around me, and held me fast. With a last caress and a sad violence I had to thrust them from me and hurry away. I heard my little son's footsteps as he ran after and tried to overtake me, I heard his voice crying loudly behind me; and my whole soul was filled with rage, almost with curses.' (Erinnerungen, p. 117 seq.)
He made his way in safety to Berlin, to find himself in the midst of that great association of Germans whose one engrossing bond of union consisted of hatred of the French, determination to shake off their yoke, and longing for their destruction. But there, too, he found the place too hot for him, and, furnished with good and influential recommendations, he took his way with Colonel Count Chazot to Breslau, on his way to Russia. From Breslau he passed to Prague, where, strangely enough, he met with information which he had failed to receive weeks before by letter, that the Minister Von Stein, summoned
thence to St. Petersburg some time previously, was specially desirous of his services in the great work of liberation he was organising.
Thus the man at last had found his mission. By what many would call a chance, but he himself honestly believed to be a special Providence, he found himself on the way to his work, his passport ready, and his place appointed. It was for this sort of service he had been making his whole life a preparation. From the early days of his boy hood, in all the modesty and simplicity of his nature, he had still nursed the presentiment of being useful to his Fatherland, when that Fatherland was found; and the unexpected call to co-operate with one so great as Von Stein found him every way prepared :
'If any ask from what sources I as a pilgrim and fugitive could be possessed of means and money, I reply: as a boy my heart was filled by God with a presentiment of my destiny; from horror of self-indulgence and luxury I early grew hardy and self-reliant, and learned how to be needy as well as how to abound. And this system I had persisted in even beyond my fortieth year, disciplining myself by voluntary deprivations of food, drink, and sleep. I had well tested my pedestrian powers, and often walked as much as thirty miles at a stretch, while my brothers rode about on handsome horses. From the time of Napoleon's elevation I had felt we should have hard trials to undergo, and I had ordered myself and my mode of life accordingly. From the profits of some of my books, my official salary in Stockholm, and some years' arrears of my Greifswald appointment, which were paid in full in the year 1810, I was provided with sufficient means for my purpose. Now and then indeed, in the company of my friends, I might spend a ducat or a Friedrich's d'or, but when alone or on my wanderings my wants were of the very slightest. I cannot tell how many a time my table was no better provided than that of a huntsman in the woods, or of a hussar on a march.' (Erinnerungen, p. 125.)
In August 1812, he reached St. Petersburg, and was received into Von Stein's house, where he entered on his functions as a secretary, his salary and appointments being paid by the Russian Government, at whose call Von Stein also was working in the good cause.'
In the following passage Arndt gives his own account of his meeting with Von Stein, and of the work he had to do :
• Towards the end of August 1812, I stood for the first time in the presence of the famous Minister Baron von Stein. I saw before me a man of middle stature, already greyish-haired and slightly stooping, but with the brightest of eyes and a most friendly bearing. Attracted to me as he had been by the perusal of some of my writings, he had invited me to join him in the most cordial manner, and as I stood before him I seemed to feel as if the impression I produced upon him satisfied his friendly expectations. He received me with as pleasant an
ease as if we had been already years acquainted, and for my part, notwithstanding the deep respect I felt before a man so famous, I could not help feeling as if we were old friends. . . . Stein pointed out to me as nearly as possible the position I was to occupy with and for and under him, though never gave me cause to feel myself subordinate. He never spoke of his own position towards the Emperor of Russia, merely saying, “You know what my object here is just as well as what “ your own has been in coming so far to the Eastward.” And then he gave me the necessary instructions as to the various persons I should have to transact business with. Though never speaking either of his relations with the Emperor of Russia or of his own doings, Stein's position in Petersburg was not only that of a representative of German interests in all the events of the time, but also in some sort that of a German dictator. We knew how, abroad, every German with a patriotic soul looked forward to the deliverance of his Fatherland from shame and wretchedness, to the dissolution of the hateful Confederation of the Rhine, and to the demolition of the might of France. And we knew how, even in Russia, there were fighting under Napoleon's standards no less than 150,000 Germans, troops raised by the Confederation, and auxiliaries levied from Prussia and Austria. It was our belief and hope, that if once the star of the mighty Attila of his time grew pale, we might move the hearts of these multitudes, driven as they had been so far from their homes towards the East, by reminding them of the great Fatherland which still lay behind them, and for which they might rather choose to wage a holy battle than to let themselves be herded on to death by a foreign conqueror. Numbers of brave men, inflamed with noble rage and holy hope, had flocked to Russia, under the rallying cry“ The German Fatherland,” in order to take sword with Alexander against Napoleon, and with all their energies to stir up German youth for the liberation of their country. This was the idea of the German Legion, which was set on foot at St. Petersburg, and the care of this matter was the first business given to my charge. ...
* What striking changes can be wrought by circumstances in the destinies of man! Who could have thought that I, who in Stockholm during the years 1807 and 1808 had written from the cabinet of Gustavus the Fourth (aye, and from the cabinet of my own heart), so many hard and bitter pamphlets and proclamations against Russia, should now, without changing my opinions or principles a hair'sbreadth, be writing in St. Petersburg for Russia, and for the Fatherland we laboured to make ready for the strife ?
* And so my posture was that of a German writer (or to use a grander name, a German author), who knew there were many places in Europe where his life was not secure from the rulers of the time. And my time was occupied to the utmost in keeping the press busy with writings, partly dictated by my own feelings, partly commissioned directly by the Government; pamphlets, stirring appeals, calls to arms, despatches, proclamations, contradictions, and exposures of French statements and reports; some couched in Russian language and suiting Russian views, others from the German (may I not say from Stein's?) stand-point. These writings were printed from time to tine in Ger