October, no overt defiance of the Austrian Government had yet
asserted itself; but the imminence of an outbreak was the
anxious thought of the hour.
The hot heads of Germany,
France, and England were more than meditating - they were
threatening, and preparing for, a European revolution.
Bloody battles were to be fought; kings and emperors were to
be dethroned and decapitated; mobs were to take the place of
parliaments; the leaders of the 'people' - I.E. the stump
orators - were to rule the world; property was to be divided
and subdivided down to the shirt on a man's - a rich man's -
back; and every 'po'r' man was to have his own, and -
somebody else's. This was the divine law of Nature,
according to the gospels of Saint Jean Jacques and Mr.
Feargus O'Connor. We were all naked under our clothes, which
clearly proved our equality. This was the simple, the
beautiful programme; once carried out, peace, fraternal and
eternal peace, would reign - till it ended, and the earthly
Paradise would be an accomplished fact.
I was an ultra-Radical - a younger-son Radical - in those
days. I was quite ready to share with my elder brother; I
had no prejudice in favour of my superiors; I had often
dreamed of becoming a leader of the 'people' - a stump
orator, I.E. - with the handsome emoluments of ministerial
William Grey came to say good-bye. He was suddenly recalled
in consequence of the insurrection.
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