Mr. Cushing to Mr. Fish.
Madrid , February 11, 1875. (Received March 12.)
Sir: I annex hereto copy and translation of a circular of the new-government, authorizing precautionary measures in reference to persons engaged in acts of agitation against the domestic peace of the country, the peculiarity of which is that it proposes to deal with the leaders, not the rank and file.
This circular contains nothing new otherwise, either in theory or practice, all previous governments in Spain, liberal or illiberal, having done the same thing; for, although the last constitution in date prohibited administrative acts of banishment, yet the prohibition was nullified by the customary device of suspending the constitutional guarantees, which, of course, had the effect of leaving unlimited power in the hands of the executive.
This measure has been applied thus far to one person only, D. Manuel Ruiz Zorrilla.
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After living in retirement at his home in one of the provinces for more than one year, that is, through the whole period of the republic, he came to Madrid a few months ago and proceeded in the first place to initiate a political movement with republican professions from one of the apartments of the Escorial.
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He has ended with drawing on himself the animadversion of King Alfonso’s government, which has invited, him to leave Spain.
I have, &c.,