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TOWN TALK, j

SUMMARY OF PASSING EVENTS.…

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SUMMARY OF PASSING EVENTS. Fk-O'M: all quarters on the Continent we hear a 1 war sound at present there is an ominous still- J ness in many of the German States, which will, I we fear, break out shortly into thunder. The j two great Powers, Prussia and Austria, are now I in battle array, the old principle of those who are not for us are against us" is at work, and notwithstanding some of the lesser States wish to declare their neutrality, they are not allowed to do so, but expected to join in the war. The movement of troops, in a military sense" (as Count Bismarck would say), has fairly com- menced. The Prussians have entered Hanover, and forced the Hanoverian army to retire. They have also entered Saxony and the Electoral Hesse, two States who declared in favour of Austria, and these, together with Hanover, have received threats from the Austrian Go- vernment that unless they join that Power their Principality shall be overthrown. They have declined compliance with this haughty de- mand, and it is probable the first ferocities of the war will fall on them.. The Federal Diet met on Saturday, and by a majority of ten to five resolved that the motion of Saxony for assistance from Austria and Bavaria, should be acceded to. The nine votes given in favour of Austria at this Diet by the lesser Powers represent a population of 10,859,731, and contingents of 173,798 men. Whilst the four votes, exclusive of Prussia herself, who follow Bismarck's advice, only represent a popula- tion of 2,954,580, and contingents of 33,500, thus showing an immense preponderance in favour of Austria, Prince remains quiet but hesitating, whilst England, having done all in her power to preserve peace, falls back into the strictest neu- trality; yet, with all her care, there is danger that even she may be drawn into the battle field. FROM America we learn that the Fenians have made their lang-thieatened raid into Canada, and the same mail which brings us the details of the movement brings also the report of the dispersion and surrender of the raiders, and the arrest, by order of the Government of the United States, of these deluded people, many of whom have given their money, and some of them their lives, to this absurd and ridiculous movement. It is stated that Stephens, the" head-centre," is at Washington, and it will oe fortunate for Mm if he does not find that the Government of the United States is dis- posed to deal as vigorously with breaches of inter- national law as the British Government did in the matter of his attempted rising in Ireland. As to this raid, it appears that a numerous band of un- disciplined men, calling themselves the Fenian Brotherhood, made their way over the border to Canada, and immediately commenced plunder. They met with the Canadian volunteers, who drove them back to the United States, where they were received as enemies, some of them slain, and many taken prisoners. This will, we hope, effectu- ally stamp out Fenianism; and we trust every Xrisnmas will return to his honest labour, forget- ful of fancied wrongs, and accept the advantages that a British subject has under the mild and be- neficent rule of the English constitution. EVERY effort is being made by the Italians to obtain possession of Yenice; Garibaldi is again in the field; and Miss Florence Nightingale wishes them God-speed, and gives advice and assistance in establishing hospitals for sick soldiers. Louis Napoleon looks on calmly and says nothing, but rather beckons the Italians on to victory; whilst the Emperor of Austria, appears to be making no efforts to resist any strong force or to protect the Venetian territories. THE sensation of the week in politics has been the defeat of Ministers in passing their Reform Bill. It had dragged its dull course along for eight weeks, and it appeared to many that it was not adopted with energy even by Ministers them- selves. The county franchise clause had passed after much. opposition; then crane the borough clause, which was to admit persons at a rental franchise of £ 7. Lord Dunkellin pro- posed as an amendment that it should be a rate- able qualification instead of a rental, in which he was joined by the Tories; and although the Government accepted this amendment as fatal to the bill, upon a division they were beaten in a very full House by eleven votes. A GRAND review of volunteers and sham fight took place the other day in Pashanger-park, the seat of Earl Cowper, in the presence of an im- mense concourse of spectators. A large body, consisting of the Herts and Essex corps, the Lon- don Rifle Brigade, the Queen's Westminsters, and St. George's were present. Earl Cowper as briga- dier, with a large staff, efficiently performed his duty, and Colonel Erskine, the Inspector-General of Volunteers, highly praised the commanders and the battalions for the manner in which the opera- tion was performed. GREAT preparations are being made for the Paris International Exhibition of 1867. A new idea has struck the Commissioners—namely, to assign a special locality for the display of the I weights and measures in use in all countries; and it is hoped that some system may be adopted by which one common standard shall, be used throughout the whole of Europe. IN courts of law there has been much done of late. The long and tedious litigation of Mrs. Ry ves, who claims to be the Princess of Cumber- land, and to be of blood royal, has been brought to a close, the jury having decided against the j claim set up, the court ordering all the documents to ba impounded, some of which were pronounced J to be forgeries. j counter charge of perjuryagainst Mrs. Allen, who accused Mr. Moseley, a dentist, of improper conduct in a railway carriage, has been brought before the magistrate at Marylebone. Her state- ments in reference to Mr. Moseley were rebutted chiefly by collateral evidence, but circumstances added to his denial; and as the woman's antece- dents were not by any means favourable, the magistrate committed her for trial. j THE murder of the housekeeper a,t the London merchant's warehouse, in Cannon-street, still re-' mains a, mystery. William Smith, who had been committed for trial for the murder, has been I si-qritied. The eddaiiee givex), hxm differed in no way from that brought forward at the Police-court, and for his defence it was very satisfactorily established, by no less than eleven j witnesses, that the prisoner passed the night of t,he murder with some friends at a beer-shop, and that he was one of the last of the company to leave. To the finding of the jury, the judge who tried the case added, that it was due to the prisoner to say "He was more than not guilty; he was innocent." The result is unsatisfactory, inasmuch as it leaves unarrested the real author of the crime, and tends to throw discredit on the efficiency and ability of the poliee force. It is by no means pleasant to think that all the machinery of the poliee and the detective system is unavail- ing to discover the man who committed a murder in one of our leading thoroughfares, and only obtained a few minutes' start of his pursuers. We trust that this Cannon-street atrocity will not be permitted to add another to the number of undis- covered murders which have recently occurred in England.

FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE.i

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