31 MARCH 1866, Page 1

War between Austria and Prussia has become much more pro-

bable. Each power declares that it is arming only to prevent attack, and special preparations known to be going on are denied with the most unscrupulous sangfroid. There can, however, be little doubt that Austria has armed, that the King of Prussia has warned his army in a general order read at the head-quarters of every regiment to be ready for active service, that the Italian Government has suddenly called in the remainder of its con- scripts, that Prussia has warned the smaller Governments to choose sides, that Austria is urgent at Munich, and that the final decision awaits only a word from the Prussian King. It is believed that he will give it in favour of action, and the mode will probably be either a demand for the surrender of Dr. May, the Holstein editor now under Prussiau sentence, or for the admission of Prussian officials into Holstein to carry out the decrees of the co-proprietor. The situation, which is costing Austria thousands an hour, cannot be long prolonged, and by next Saturday we ought to know whether Europe is or is not once more at war. The balance of evidence is in our judgment unfavourable to peace.