THE HARDEST WORKER AMONG MODERN KINGS

PRUSSIA, a small State in the barren north of Germany, was the creation of the Great Elector of Brandenburg (1642-88), and of his eccentric grandson and namesake King Frederick William I. (1713-40), who made no war, but hoarded money, created an enormous standing army and competent civil service, and warped the whole nature of his son Frederick, who became the ablest soldier, the most ruthless schemer, and the hardest worker among modern kings. Frederick seized Silesia in the War of the Austrian Succession, and with some help from England held it during the Seven Years' War (1756-63). He exacted appalling sacrifices from the Prussian people, but he gave them peace and efficiency afterwards, and settled many of them on territory appropriated from Poland. The characteristics of Prussian administration and policy had already been evolved.