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Frederick was now in imminent danger of being assailed by a coalition of Austria, Russia, Poland, and England. Indeed, it was by no means certain that France might not also join the alliance. All this was the result of Fredericks great crime in wresting Silesia from Austria. Such was the posture of affairs when, in the summer of 1755, Frederick decided to take a trip into Holland incognito. He disguised himself with a black wig, and assumed the character of a musician of the King of Poland. At Amsterdam he embarked for Utrecht in the common passage-boat. The king mingled with the other passengers without any one suspecting his rank. There chanced to be in the boat a young Swiss gentleman, Henry de Catt, twenty-seven years of age. He was a teacher, taking a short tour for recreation. He gives the following account of his interview with the king, whom, at the time, he had no reason to suppose was other than an ordinary passenger. We give the narrative in his own words: Left alone, Bergan remounted Vic, though not without difficulty. The bewildering effect of his potent draught, which had momentarily been overcome by the excitement of his late adventure, now made itself felt again. As he rode along, his head began to swim; a deadly nausea seized him; his limbs seemed paralyzed. Arrived within the gates of his uncle's domain, he suffered himself to slide slowly from the saddle to the ground; and almost immediately, consciousness forsook him. Suddenly, the deep silence was broken by the soft whirr of wings. A bird, flying as straight over the moonlighted fields as if let loose by an unseen hand for that purpose, alighted in the boughs over the two motionless figures, and shook down upon them a shower of liquid notes,sweet, clear, and joyous,a very prophecy of hope.