The Crown Prince's Palace.
The life of Frederick III., as Crown Prince, was an exceedingly difficult one, for he was not in sympathy with many of his father's and Prince Bismarck's views. He made, however, no active opposition, but waited patiently for years, until as Emperor he could bring about those constitutional reforms which, in his judgment, were so greatly needed. But, " Man proposes, God disposes." When the old Emperor, at the age of ninety-one years, approached the valley of the shadow of death, and murmured as his last words, " Fritz, dear Fritz," his son and successor was not in Berlin, but far away beyond the Alps in the Italian village of San Remo, death-stricken himself, and already feeling, day and night, that fatal clutch upon his throat which no professional skill was able to relax. The wife of Frederick, who, previous to her marriage, had been, as the eldest daughter of Victoria, Princess Royal of England, is in all respects a noble woman, unostentatious, amiable, refined, and with decided intellectual ability. Both she and her husband were liberal patrons of art, literature, and music. For several years the philosopher Strauss was one of her regular correspondents, and at his death her portrait hung above his bed. Among her accomplishments is that of sculpture, and a marble bust of great fidelity and beauty (the product of her chisel) was given a perninety days. Ill as he was these days were not misspent. Although he knew well that his son shared Bismarck's sentiments, and though he saw with inexpressible regret that any liberal policy, which he might start, would be undone the moment he should die, still, with a natural desire to leave at least a little influence for good upon his realm, he made several changes and expressed views, which clearly indicated what he would have done, had his life been prolonged. For instance, to show his disapproval of the Jewish persecution then prevalent in Prussia, the first man chosen by him to receive the famous order of the Black Eagle, was a Hebrew.
The Crown Prince At San Remo.
The Sceptre In His Hands For At Least.
Emperor William II.
Frederick's noble face presented a pathetic picture, when his long struggle with disease had ended. The traces of his sufferings were still visible, and made even those who most loved him glad that he was finally at rest. Aside from the pain which he heroically endured, what must have been his disappointment in giving up one of the most brilliant thrones on earth, and in resigning the sceptre to his son, after so many years of waiting, and just at the moment when he was on the point of carrying out his life-long hopes and aspirations! Yet through it all he showed the same sweet, patient, uncomplaining spirit to the end. What could be more pathetic than the words traced on his tablet for his son to read, " Learn to suffer without complaining." What wonder that his surgeon, Doctor Mackenzie, could say of him, "Thus passed away the noblest specimen of humanity, whom it was ever my privilege to see."
A Room In The Crown Prince S Palace.
There have been few scenes in the history of Prussian royalty more touching than that which occurred in the Palace of Charlottenburg, when this illustrious sovereign, prevented by ill health from following his father's body to the grave, stood at the window and watched the funeral procession of old Kaiser William wind through the park to the imperial mausoleum. He must have known then that the hour of his own departure could not be far distant; and solemn, indeed, must have been his thoughts, as he stood speechless and alone, in royal isolation, gazing upon a funeral pageant in which all other members of the royal household, including even his own wife and children, were participating, but from which he, the reigning sovereign and son of the dead Emperor, was excluded.