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A History of the Nineteenth Century, Year by Year

Were received in triumph in Vienna


Quiet restored]

[Sidenote: Hungarian demands]

[Sidenote: Kossuth in Vienna]

[Sidenote: Demonstrations of enthusiasm]

The news of Metternich's downfall was received with deafening cheers. His personality was so closely identified with all that was most hateful in Austrian politics that the mere announcement of his resignation sufficed to quell the popular tumult. On the night of March 14, Metternich contrived to escape from Vienna unobserved, and fled across the frontier. On the same day a National Guard was established in Vienna, and was supplied with arms taken from the government arsenal. The Viennese outbreak gave irresistible force to the national movement in Hungary. Now the Chamber of Magnates, which had hitherto opposed the demands of the Lower House, adopted the same by a unanimous vote. On March 15, a deputation was despatched to Vienna to demand from the Emperor not only a liberal constitution, but a separate Ministry, absolute freedom of the press, trial by jury, equality of religion, and a free public-school system. The Hungarians, with Kossuth in the lead, were received in triumph in Vienna. They paraded through the streets, and were greeted by Emperor Ferdinand in person. He consented to everything and issued an imperial rescript, promising a liberal constitution to the rest of Austria as well. The light-hearted Viennese indulged

in indescribable jubilations. On March 18, the Emperor drove through the city. Somebody put a revolutionary banner into his hands. The black, red and gold ensign of united Germany was hoisted over the tower of St. Stephen. In an intoxication of joy the people took the horses from the imperial carriage and drew it triumphantly through the streets. The regular troops around the imperial palace were superseded by the new National Guards.

[Sidenote: Germany in a ferment]

[Sidenote: Prussian Assembly convoked]

[Sidenote: King of Prussia cowed]

[Sidenote: Revolt in Berlin]

[Sidenote: Prince William's part]

[Sidenote: King of Prussia submissive]

[Sidenote: Royal promises]

[Sidenote: Rising of Schleswig-Holstein]

[Sidenote: Reverse at Bau]

By this time the same storm of revolution was sweeping over Germany. Popular demonstrations occurred at Mannheim, Cassel, Breslau, Koenigsberg and along the Rhine region in Cologne, Duesseldorf and Aix-la-Chapelle. A popular convention at Heidelberg, on March 5, had resolved upon a national assembly to be held at Frankfort-on-the-Main by the end of March. Elections for this assembly were being held throughout Germany. The long-desired union of Germany was at last to be accomplished. On March 14, King Frederick William of Prussia convoked the Prussian Assembly for April 27, to deliberate upon Prussia's part in the proposed German union. Then came the news of the events in Vienna. Crowds gathered in the streets excitedly discussing the events of the day. Attempts on the part of the police to disperse them led to threatening encounters. Under the stress of alarming bulletins from Vienna,

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