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Today is the 260th anniversary of the Berliner Husarenstreich in 1757, when Austro-Hungarian forces briefly occupied Berlin whilst Frederick the Great was licking his wounds after the battle of Kolin (Kerle, wollt ihr ewig leben?).

It seems a little surreal that they were paid a ransom (gloves for the empress?) and then disappeared before the cavalry (excuse the pun) turned up. In our much more enlightened times they would have declared the Prussians to be irredeemably evil and demolished the city, as it was the Austrians suffered only 10 dead, the Prussians a few more.

In celebration I watched Husaren in Berlin, an amusing enough film but far from a documentary.

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