23 JUNE 1866, Page 1


THE European War has fairly begun. Immediately on receipt of the vote passed by the Diet on the 14th inst. Count von Bismarck presented an ultimatum to the Courts of Hanover and Saxony, demanding that they should disarm and accept the Prussian project of reform, under penalty of war. Both Courts refused, and on the 18th inst. the Prussians entered Dresden, Hanover, Hesse Cassel, and Hamburg, without apparently firing a shot. The King of Hanover retreated with his army to Got- tingen, a disconnected dominion of his own, the King of Saxony and his 25,000 men retired into Bohemia, and the Elector of Hesse Cassel fled towards Vienna. By the following day a conscription of 40,000 men had been ordered in Schleswig-Holstein, the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, who was hostile, had changed his mind, and placed his "army" at Prussian disposal, Waldeck, and Reuss, and Saxe-Coburg Gotha, &c., had sent their little squads in the same direction, Oldenburg and Anhalt had agreed to the Prussian proposal for a new Bund, and Germany north of the Main had in fact been absorbed in Prussia. For the time being the new provinces will be governed by Generals, but Prussia „controls their resources, levies their taxes, and uses their men, and it seems very doubtful whether she will in the end meet any military resistance. The Hanoverian army cannot reach the main body of Federals in Frankfort, and will in all probability surrender with a good grace to "superior numbers," an excuse suggested in a Prussian proclamation.