of Friedrich Engels 23
what the reaction does not know, just because these relations are so
bourgeois. In face of this, all bourgeois attempts at restraining reaction are as impotent as all the moral indignations and all the exalted
proclamations of the democrats. A new revolution will only be possible
as a result of a new crisis. And the one is as inevitable as the other."
The last words of their review was a crushing denunciation and merciless criticism of a proclamation by Mazzini, Ledru-Rollin, Ruge, and
Daraz, who had constituted themselves a European central committee,
to the whole of the European refugees to unite under one flag, and in
which the failure of the revolution was explained with bland simplicity
—i.e., as the result of quarrels and jealousies of the various leaders!
Of course, Marx and Engels denounce this as pure philistinism, and
show that the bourgeois sentimentalists who think that the enthusiasms
and ideals of a few are sufficient to induce a revolution at will in any
desired direction, have simply put the cart before the horse, and,
therefore, will never get any "forrarder."
In this same review, Engels wrote a number of other articles and
series of articles, such as on the Ten Hours Bill, and on the German
Peasants' War, which was later published as a pamphlet, and is the first
historical description of pre-capitalist relations from the point of view
of the materialistic conception of history.
The views held by Marx and Engels on the impossibility of making
revolution at any time at will, necessarily caused great dissensions in
the ranks of the Communist League. The older members, such as
Eccarius, Pfander, Seiler, Freiligrath, Ferdinand Wolff, and Bauer,
all with the exception of Schapper and Willich, followed Marx and
Engels. The younger, with exceptions here and there, such as Wilhelm
Liebknecht and Conrad Schramm, followed the general current of
the refugees against them.
The crisis came to a head in the sitting of the central executive committee, September, 1850, in which, although the Marx-Engels
tendency had a majority, it became evident that no compromise
was possible between the two sections. As a result, both Marx and
Engels were unable to do much practical work for some time, and
they withdrew themselves into their theoretical works.
Back to Manchester
In the meantime, Engels' father was not content to see his son in the
midst of the revolutionary movement in England, and he wrote
offering him a post in Calcutta; this, however, Engels refused. He
found, however, that by means of journalism, which was the career he
had decided to follow, he could earn no more than enough to keep
On the other hand, Marx had a wife and three young children, and
could, by means of his writings, earn very little to support his family.
Engels felt he could not stand by and see a great man like Marx, whose
genius he recognised from the first days of their more intimate rela-