Prosecution of the Augsburg Gazette

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Author(s) Karl Marx
Written 4 February 1860


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Source: Marx-Engels Collected Works, Volume 17, p. 10;
Published as a pamphlet: on February 4, 1860.

9 Grafton Terrace, Maitland Park, Haverstock Hill, London, 4th February, 1860[edit source]

Sir,

You will remember that The Free Press of May 27th, 1859, published an article headed: “The Grand Duke Constantine to be King of Hungary.” In that article Mr. Vogt, of Geneva, although not named, was pointed at, in a manner intelligible to the German refugees, as a Bonapartist agent, who, on the outset of the Italian war, had offered “large bribes” to Liberals in Germany, and German Democrats in London. The writer gave vent to his intense delight at the indignant repulse those attempts at bribery had met with. Mr. Charles Blind I assert to be the author of that notice. You can correct me if I am in error. Some time later, there circulated in London an anonymous German pamphlet, entitled Zur Warnung (a warning), which, in point of fact, may be considered a reproduction of the article of The Free Press, only that it gave fuller details and Vogt’s name. Having been reprinted in a German London paper, entitled Das Volk (The People); thence the anonymous pamphlet found its way to the columns of the Augsburger Allgemeine Zeitung (The Augsburg Gazette), which, consequently, was sued by Mr. Vogt for libel. Meanwhile I had obtained from Mr. V6gele, a compositor then employed by Mr. Hollinger, the publisher of Das Volk, a written declarations to the effect, that the pamphlet was printed in Hollinger’s office, and drawn up by Mr. Charles Blind. This declaration, as I told you at the time, was sent over to the Augsburg Gazette. The Augsburg tribunal having declined to decide the case. Mr. Blind at last came out in the Augsburg Gazette. Not content with a point-blank denial of his authorship of the anonymous pamphlet, he, in terms most positive, declared the pamphlet not to have issued from Hollinger’s Printing Office. In proof of this latter statement, he laid before the public a declaration b signed by Hollinger himself, and one Wiehe, a compositor, who, as he said, had for eleven months been continuously employed by Hollinger. To this joint declaration of Blind, Hollinger and Wiehe I replied in the Augsburg Gazette; but Blind, in his turn, repeated his denial, and again referred to the testimony of Hollinger and Wiehe. Vogt, who, from the beginning, and for purposes of his own, had designed me as the secret author of the pamphlet, then published a brochure full of the most infamous calumnies against myself.

Now, before taking any further step, I want to show up the fellows who evidently have played into the hands of Vogt. I, therefore, publicly declare that the statement of Blind, Wiehe and Hollinger, according to which the anonymous pamphlet was not printed in Hollinger’s office, 3, Litchfield Street, Soho, is a deliberate lie. First, Mr. Vögele, one of the compositors, formerly employed by Hollinger, will declare upon oath that the said pamphlet was printed in Hollinger’s office, was written in the hand-writing of Mr. Blind, and partly composed by Hollinger himself. Secondly, it can he judicially proved that the pamphlet and the article in Das Volk, have been taken off the same types. Thirdly, it will be shown that Wiehe was not employed by Hollinger for eleven consecutive months, and, especially, was not employed by him at the time of the pamphlet’s publication. Lastly, witnesses may be summoned in whose presence Wiehe himself confessed having been persuaded by Hollinger to sign the wilfully false declaration in the Augsburg Gazette. Consequently, I again .declare the above said Charles Blind to be a deliberate liar.

If I am wrong, he may easily confound me by appealing to an English Court of Law.

Karl Marx