23 FEBRUARY 1895, Page 1

The prospect of peace between China and Japan is still

very dim. The Japanese have refused to treat except upon Japanese soil ; and though it is understood that Li Hung Chang will ultimately go to Tekio, he had by the last accounts been ordered to Pekin to receive his final in- structions, and, if we understand the situation correctly, he does not quite like the order. The Emperor, it is said is greatly excited by the fall of Wei-hai-wei, and has ordered all officers and soldiers who retreated from that place to be put to death,—a fate which Admiral Ting and three colleagues in command have anticipated by suicide. It is doubtful if the Emperor is ready for peace yet. He is probably unable to believe in defeat, and is waiting to see if his Generals in Manchuria cannot defeat the Japanese. They say they can, and a Japanese reverse on land would change the whole aspect of affairs ; but the Chinese want a spear-head for their army. They have always to attack, and their soldiers quail before the slaughter which the Japanese artillery and heavy rifle-fire cause in the advance-guard. With ten thousand " Ghazeea," as the Ottomans call them, men who will charge, whatever their losses, content if one in three reach the enemy's ranks, the Chinese would win yet, but these are precisely the men whom Pekin does not command. Admiral Ting was as stubborn as man could wish to be, but even he made no effort to take his ships out, so they have been patched up and sent to Japan for repairs. One of them, the great ironclad, is a really formidable vessel.