News from Paris (Neue Rheinische Zeitung) (1)

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Author(s) Karl Marx
Written 24 June 1848

Source: Marx-Engels Collected Works, Volume 7, p. 121;
First published: in the special supplement to the Neue Rheinische Zeitung No. 25, June 25, 1848.
Collection(s): Neue Rheinische Zeitung

Cologne, June 24, 10 p.m. Letters of the 23rd from Paris have failed to arrive. A courier who has passed through Cologne has told us that when he left fighting had broken out in Paris between the people and the national guard,[1] and that he had heard heavy cannon-fire at some distance from Paris.[2]

  1. The national guard — an armed civic militia that was formed in Paris at the beginning of the French revolution of 1789-93 and existed, with intervals, till August 1871. During the February revolution of 1848, a considerable section of the national guard took the side of the insurgents, but in the course of the Paris uprising in June 1848 the Provisional Government employed the national guards of bourgeois districts in the fight against the workers
  2. In the Neue Rheinische Zeitung this item was followed by a report on the events in Paris printed in smaller type and based, apparently, on the French newspapers which had just arrived. Part of it read: “The immediate cause of the new uprising was measures directed at abolishing the national workshops — censuses of the workers, expulsion of workers who were not born in Paris to their native parts or to Sologne to build canals, introduction of piecework in the remaining workshops etc. — as well as the law on reintroduction of caution money for journals, open attacks (see today’s issue of our paper, ‘Paris’, June 22) on the popular press, debates in the National Assembly so closely resembling those in the Chamber of Peers under Louis Philippe that even the noble knight Montalembert, in his speech at the session on the 22nd, said the same things, in a somewhat different form, which he had said shortly before the February revolution in defence of money-bags, the law against street gatherings etc.” The report quoted at length the French newspaper Journal des Dibats politiques et littéraires’s account of the events of June 22 in Paris. It was hostile towards the insurgents and misrepresented their conflict with the Minister of Public Works, Marie, a moderate republican and spokesman of the Government. For this reason the Neue Rheinische Zeitung’s report ended with a warning: “It should not he forgotten that the Journal des Débats, which printed this report, is an old Court sheet and Marie is an advocate of the law against street gatherings and the man of the National