Frederick II Bibliography

Considérations sur l’état présent du corps politique en Europe 1738
Frederick’s first political essay, revealing his disappointment with the weak position of Prussia, which had recently been forced to abandon the Hohenzollern claims to the duchies of Jülich and Berg on the lower Rhine in the face of the united opposition of the great powers.
Anti-Machiavelli 1740
Published by Voltaire at The Hague, the work circulated widely in France where it was regarded as the political programme of the young ruler who succeeded to the Prussian throne on 31 May, 1740. Frederick expounded upon the principles of the enlightened ruler in opposition to the maxims of Machiavelli. The work contains the often misquoted sentence: “The ruler is in no way the absolute lord of the people under him, but merely the first servant.”
Histoire de mon temps 1746
Frederick began writing Histoire de mon temps in 1746 and was originally devised for the political education of the heir to the throne and not for publication. The work contains the inner thoughts of the king as well as his concept of history, combining the political philosophy of the Enlightenment with a high estimate of the part played by a will to self-assertion that Frederick saw embodied in the great personalities in world history.
Oeuvres de Philosophe de Sanssouci 1750
Examen de l’essai sur les prejuges 1770
An attack on Holbach’s Essai sur les prejuges, which advocated measures to make society less hierarchical, close and stultified; if princes did not adopt such measures, then philosophers should suggest them to the people and encourage public opinion.
Essai sor les formes de gouvernement et sur les devoirs des souverains (Essay on the Forms of Government and the Duties of Sovereigns) 1777
?Would not one have to be demented to suppose that men said to one of their number: we are raising you above us because we like being slaves, and so we are giving you the power to direct our thoughts as you like? On the contrary, what they said was: we need you to maintain the laws which we wish to obey, to govern us wisely, to defend us; for the rest, we require that you respect our liberty.?
De la littérature allemande 1780