15 MARCH 1873, Page 3

Prince Bismarck has again been taking a very prominent part

la-the discussions of the Herrenhaue. And he has at last openly identified himself with the Liberal party of Prussia. " The progress of Liberalism," he told the Prussian House of Lords, "is indubitable. It proceeds from the disorganisation of the Con- servative party, and from the conviction that a Conservative party of any importance no longer exists." But Liberalism in Prince Bis- marok's mouth here means war with the 'Catholic Church, and a war of a kind which we should call Orangeism, and not Liberal- ism. Prince Bismarck's statement that at the end of the war with France he had made every effort,—had gone a very long way,—to conciliate the Vatican, is, however, obviously quite true. At the time we showed our readers the very strong indi- cations in his speeches of a genuine wish for a Conservative alliance with the Catholic party, and it was probably only the obstinacy of the Pope, prompted by the Particularist priesthood of Bavaria, which prevented that understanding. As it is, Prince Bismarck, finding he cannot have peace, declares war with Rome. That is his way. But we decline to regard it as a policy of Liberalism to punish by persecution bigoted Churches and reactionary creeds. The anti-Catholic amend- ments of the Prussian Constitution passed the Herreuhaus by very large majorities.