21 APRIL 1866, Page 1

The position of affairs in Germany continues almost unchanged. There

are rumours that Count von Bismark is ill, that both powers are simultaneously to disarm, and that the King has given way, but the only facts certain are that Prussia has declined to disarm, that the King has refused to receive an address from the traders of Berlin protesting against war, that the Italian Govern- ment has published a report showing that its army can never hope to be in finer condition, that the Afoniteur is silent, and that somehow, in spite of all this, Europe believes less in war than it did last week. So strong is the feeling in Austria, that Govern- ment speaks of raising volunteer corps of Bohemians and Hun- garians, and the smaller Governments arc all crying out for a reference of the dispute to the Diet. It is probable that the Prussian Court, with whom the initiative rests, is not yet decided, but its vacillation is on the whole favourable to peace. Nations rarely fight when they have time to think out consequences.