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Frederick II (1712-1786)
Frederick was King of Prussia, but possessed a number of unusual skills for a monarch. He was deeply involved in study, particularly French literature, music and philosophy (Voltaire was well-acquainted with Frederick and corresponded with him). A talented flutist, Frederick also composed. He was, however, also regarded as a capable military talent (Prussia's army included over 200,000 soldiers during Frederick's time) and was fiscally prudent, able to carry out his many military campaigns/wars without incurring debt. Over the decades of his reign, Frederick acquired additional territories that served to double Prussia's area. Though Frederick's writings indicate a highly cultivated and enlightened figure, he was not particularly liberal with his people, although not unjust; Prussia, it was said, was governed as a large army camp with little personal liberty (although a relatively free press.)