Democratic Banquet (February 1849)

From Marxists-en
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The banquet in Mlheim on the Rhine described here was one of the first democratic banquets arranged in the Rhine Province to mark the anniversaries of the February revolution in France and the March revolution in Germany. Considering these banquets as a form of revolutionary education of the masses, Marx and Engels took part in some of them.

MĂŒlheim on the Rhine, February 11 (received late). Today a democratic banquet took place here, arranged by the Workers’ Association. Members of the Cologne Workers’ and Democratic Associations were invited. Instrumental music and songs alternated with toasts supported by lengthy speeches.

Bengel, President of the local Workers’ Association, developed the connection of the present with the past in a long report. Lucas gave a toast to the guests, especially the men who, like the rĂ©dacteur en chef of the Neue Rheinische Zeitung Karl Marx, who was present, had in words and deeds upheld the rights of the working class long before the February revolution. Schapper toasted the “democratic republic”. Karl Marx spoke of the participation of the German Avorkers in the struggles in France, England, Belgium and Switzerland. He raised a toast to Gladbach, one of the few agreers[1] who truly represented the interests of the people. Frederick Engels toasted the Hungarians and Kossuth. Ott of Worringen spoke about constitutional liberalism, aristocracy and democracy, Fischbach about the misery of the people and means of redress. Gladbach cast a retrospective glance at the dissolved National Assembly and in a lively report criticised its weakness, its indecision, and its lack of revolutionary understanding. Krahe, finally, spoke on the slogan of the February revolution:

“Liberty, Equality, Fraternity.”

The first democratic banquet in the Rhine Province was so successful that it will surely be imitated.

  1. ↑ Deputies of the Prussian National Assembly.— Ed.