« PreviousContinue »
POSTSCRIPT.- May 3rd.
Extract of a Letter from Cracow, April 15th.
“ Tatre is to be a grand parade on the 19th in honour of the Emperor Ferdinand, after which the troops composing the corps of occupation will commence their march to quit the territory of Cracow.
"An Austrian detachment of five hundred men and fifty cavalry will, however, remain. The Senate, that is to say, its President, has demanded, they say, this prolongation of their stay, to give time to reorganise the militia of the town, which has been disbanded.
“ The three Powers had in vain sought to obtain that the Senate should previously demand the occupation; but since then the President of this body has been induced to lay down his office, and the Conference of the three Residents has replaced him arbitrarily, and contrary to all the laws, by a man who will now demand, in the name of the Senate, all that they desire.
“ It happened accidentally that, on the very day of the announcement of the evacuation, a grand menagerie arrived at Cracow, on which the people amused themselves with repeating, that the lion . of England had put to flight the troops of the three Powers.'
“We had received, a few days before, the details of the debate brought on in the English House of Commons by the inquiries of Sir Stratford Canning, on the subject of the armed occupation of our city."
ALTHOUGH the following translation from the German is only a review of the first Numbers of the Portfolio, yet it contains so much interesting information, and is so ably drawn up, that we cannot abstain from reproducing it. The principal cause, however, of our doing so is to allow the people of this country to appreciate the effect silently produced on the public mind in Germany.
One of the most singular incidents connected with this periodical is, that although its tendency has been of a nature hostile to the views of those who entertain aggressive projects, still it has not been prohibited in any Continental State.
Two reasons may be assigned for this.
The first, that it has no community or participation with any principles, or with any party, as regards internal government. Hitherto the aggressive views of Russia, as of Prussia, have been opposed in the spirit of the French Propagande. The opposition manifested so acrimoniously by Austria and Prussia, and with such appearance of
acrimony by Russia against those political movements which have agitated more particularly the West, has been conducted under the banner of legitimacy and absolutism, and thus all feelings of national interests, which really are attractive in their natural force and their honest tendency, have become revolting to the people of Europe by their being constantly mixed up with party animosity and with domestic dissensions; and have been rendered fatiguing to men's minds by a series of external and internal complications which scarcely allowed two neighbours to agree in one principle, or to believe in the same fact.
We think we may, without presumption, lay claim to having separated the question of natural interests from political party. In this country, as on the Continent, while our views have been adopted by no organs of the press
consequence of political partizanship, so have they not been combated or opposed by any through political opposition. Thus presented, this question, great and impressive from the circumstances of the moment, has been rendered simple and intelligible, and as amidst the struggle of principles in England, so in face of the restrictive censorship of the Conti
nental Governments, this publication has obtained emancipation from those inflictions which have been hitherto applied to the criticism of Cabinets.
A second, and we believe a far more important reason for the fact of the non-prohibition of the Portfolio by the censorship, is the effect which it has had upon those Governments which have hitherto, in a greater or less degree, visited with penalties every publication which had an appearance of enmity to Russia. They were justified in doing so on the mere point of expediency, because nothing really had appeared capable of producing any effect which could sustain them in taking a line of opposition to her.
The disclosures and the views communicated through our pages, while they could not fail to act on the opinions of the individuals composing those Governments, must have awakened the hope of systematic and effectual opposition to that Power, and induced many individuals to look forward to the arrestation of those projects which they had long seen or now at length become convinced of. Thus was presented to the Statesmen of the Continent an entirely new prospect of future combinations, which would lead some to calculate on a change of influence and of policy, which might lead those to distinction who had the sagacity to see it from afar. This is not a mere supposition. We represent circumstances which to our certain knowledge exist.
It is not easy for those who have judged of England within her seas, and of Europe from England, to comprehend the powerful effect thus produced on the mind of the people and Governments of the Continent. It is not in England that the power of England can be appreciated. It is not whilst sitting under the shadow of a banner that rules the seas, and sựrrounded with the security of equal laws, that men can comprehend how deeply a few printed words may be capable of affecting a nation, placed in immediate contact with overwhelming military masses, and overshadowed by foreign political influences :—where, too, the recollections of the late wars, which we saw only from our shores, and remember by trophies, are associated with melancholy reminiscences of the devastation of the village and of bloodshed on the hearth.
While, therefore, throughout Germany, there exists that deep and sullen dread of Russia, and that universal, though indistinct, feeling of con