Neue Rheinische Zeitung February 1849

Political Trial

Source: MECW Volume 8, p. 340;
Written: about February 9, 1849;
First published: in Neue Rheinische Zeitung No. 218, February 10, 1849.

From Weimar Region, February 3. Under this date-line the Frankfurter Journal writes:

“Now at last the days are approaching when our first assize court will deliver its verdict here on the results of the impending political examinations. After the commencement of the proceedings had been continually postponed from one week to the next, now at last, according to what is being said, it is definitely fixed for the 15th of this month. The court sittings will open with the trial of the leaders of the democratic party who were arrested here and in Jena in October last year, Dr. Lafaurie, candidate Rothe, the student Amelung, Dr. Otto and the writer Jäde. These are almost the only ones of the mass of people arrested during those days against whom the Public Prosecutor could find material at all for an indictment. The examination conducted against the writer Deinhard, resident here, who was also arrested at that time, yielded so little result that after Deinhard had spent two months in the unhealthy prison cells of our criminal court, the Public Prosecutor was unable even to frame an indictment against him. Candidate Lange from Jena, who was also arrested at that time, suffered four attacks of haemorrhage in Weimar prison, and was only then taken in a half-dead state to his parents in Jena, where he died soon afterwards, on January 7 of this year, after again being interrogated for three consecutive days by the criminal court. Our jurymen, however, will be very surprised when, instead of the alleged plans for high treason, rumours of which have been so much spread and discussed, they will be presented with the simple, trifling facts on which the indictment against the above-mentioned persons is based.”

(It is to be hoped that at its next victory the people will not, as in March, be so simple-minded or forgetful as to allow all their executioners to remain in their lucrative posts. On the contrary, it is fairly safe to assume that it will hasten to subject the whole gang of reactionary officials, and among them first and foremost the blood-thirsty legal hypocrites also called “judges”, to six months of detention under examination in Pennsylvanian prisons,[300] and then for further reform will use them in railway and road construction.)