Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Scarce Translation of Frederick the Great's "Strategical Instructions" -- Inscribed by Thomas Carlyle

    [Frederick II, King of Prussia.] C. H. Smith. Secret Strategical Instructions, of Frederic the Second, For His Inspectors General. Translated from the German, by Captain C. H. Smith. Coventry: Printed for the Author, 1811. First edition in English. Small folio. x, [11-]28 pages plus 31 hand-colored engraved plates containing maps and plans, five of which are folding. Plate 21 with the tipped-in errata flap. Half-bound in red polished calf over marbled paper boards. Gilt spine and top edge. Marbled endpapers. Minor rubbing to extremities. Foxing throughout. A few pencil notations. This copy inscribed by Thomas Carlyle to Sir Colin Campbell in 1855 (signed "T. Carlyle"). Also inscribed by archaeologist Eric Birley to Major-General Clayton Bissell in 1948. Fine. Quite scarce.

    In the "Editor's Preface to the German and French Editions," Frederick the Great's strategic prowess as displayed in these Instructions is described thusly: "Here Frederic [sic] fully displays the art, by which he was so constantly victorious: -- the manner of misleading the Enemy respecting the real point of attack -- even the art of rapidly passing from the defensive to the offensive state, keeping in view all the chances of success. By these principles, peculiarly his own, he was enabled often to accomplish great actions with small comparative means."

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2011
    13th-14th Tuesday-Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 675

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2020 September 14 - 15 Americana & Political.

    Learn about consigning with us

    This was my first time dealing with an auction house, and I am 100% completely impressed with Heritage. There is not an aspect of this process that I have a critique for.
    Darryl S.,
    Stuart, FL
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2019 September 21 - 22 The David and Janice Frent Collection Presidential &  Political Americana, Part VI Signature Auction - Dallas
    2019 September 21 - 22 The David and Janice Frent Collection Presidential & Political Americana, Part VI Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $648,838