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Luise suddenly realized that she had come to live in a strange place, among people whose attitude was very different from the close-knit camaraderie to which she was accustomed. Distrust of new relatives was a Hohenzollern characteristic. The older generation of the family in 1794 consisted of the Dowager Queen Elisabeth-Christine, the widow of Frederick the Great, and of his two brothers, Prince Henry and Prince Ferdinand. Henry had hoped to play an important part when his nephew came to the throne, however he had been snubbed and spent most of his time at his country house at Rheinsberg. The Crown Prince did not approve of his father's way of life, with his mistresses and their children. This may have well been the root of the domestic moral code he set for himself to follow. On April 1 the Crown Prince took Luise to Potsdam, where he had to oversee military manouvers. Luise was not sorry to leave Berlin, where she had been closely observed and for the first time in her life had encountered hostility. Life in Potsdam was more tranquil.

Since she was expecting her first child she did not accompany her husband on horseback. But she took part in shooting contests and games in the evening. Hand in hand they walked for hours in the parks of Sans Souci. Luise asked the King for permission to stay at Sans Souci, when six weeks later the Crown Prince had to leave for war. The aggressive intervention of Russia and Prussia in Poland had activated a popular riot. It was headed by Thaddeus Kosciusko, who had fought in the American revolution and hoped now to free his homeland from foreign dominaton. From Posen, the Crown Prince sent Luise a picture of Kosciusko, who was a hero even to those who were officially his enemies. The defeat and the capture of the patriot, the taking of Warsaw and the grisling mopping up of the campaign were left to the Russians. In September the Crown Prince was on his way home, as Luise wanted her husband at home for the birth of the child. A few days after his arrival, Luise fell down a flight of stairs and a girl was born prematurely dead. It was bitter but passing sorrow. There would be other children. On October 24, 1795 Luise gave birth to a boy who would be named for his father and grandfather. The King offered his daughter-in- law the castle of Oranienburg as a present for her eighteenth birthday. Since it was too splendid for the Crown Prince's taste and much too costly to maintain, the gift was declined. After the peace, he bought a tract of land near Paretz not far from Potsdam. There he had a house built, and Paretz was to become the place where Luise, her husband and their children could live a normal family life. On Peacock Island (Pfaueninsel) not too far away, was a summer house, yet another refuge away from the world and its madness.


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