17 MARCH 1866, Page 2

The relations between Prussia and Austria continue unchanged,' the King

insisting that the fate of the Duchies shall be settled, and the Kaiser quietly declining to settle it. The attitude Of Prussia is, if possible, rather more insolent and rather less firm. The King has decreed that inhabitants of the Duchies guilty of advocating the right of any person save the King of Prussia or Emperor of Austria shall be imprisoned, but on the other hand, he has delayed his threatened ultimatum. The 'Emperor, for his part, has held a council of marshals to decide whether he can fight with a prospect of success, and has allowed it to transpire that the answer is affirmative. Count von Bismark had not expected this, and the dispute may in the end be referred to the arbitration of the Diet. At present the disputants resemble nothing so much as two street boys, one of whom exclaims, " You hit me, just ! " while the other retorts, "No, you just hit me !"