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The Late Birmingham Conference[288]

Karl Marx

It is a great mistake to judge of the movement in England by the reports in the London press. Take, for instance, the late Birmingham Conference. The majority of the London newspapers did not even notice it, while the remainder contained only the meager intelligence of its having taken place. Yet what was this Conference? It was a public Congress composed of delegates from Birmingham, London, Huddersfield, Newcastle, Halifax, Sheffield, Leeds, Derby, Bradford, Nottingham and other places, convened to take the task of discussing the most important subject of the day—the foreign policy of England—out of the hands of an incapable and collapsing Parliament.

The movement, undoubtedly, had been instigated by the meetings addressed by Mr. Urquhart throughout the factory districts, and the distinguishing feature of the Conference just held at Birmingham was the harmonious working together of men from the middle and the laboring classes. The Conference divided itself into various Committees charged to report on the most prominent questions of British foreign policy. I have been favored with a detailed account of the proceedings and the documents connected therewith, of which I proceed to place the most characteristic before the readers of the Tribune. The first is a correspondence between the Secretary of the Conference and Lord Malmesbury, the Foreign Minister of Lord Derby, concerning the treaty on the Danish succession[289] of May 8, 1852. Lord Malmesbury writes[a]:

"Sir: I have had the honor of receiving your invitation to attend the Birmingham Conference on the 17th, 18th and 19th July. It will not be in my power to do so. As you request me to furnish you with any useful information on the subject of the proposed subjects of inquiry, I do not hesitate to observe that your resolution passed on July 6, respecting the Danish treaty of 8th May, 1852, is founded on a totally erroneous view of the cases and facts. It is not true that the succession to Denmark, the Sound and Schleswig-Holstein, is secured to Russia by that treaty. Russia has obtained no right, present or prospective, that she did not possess before the treaty. There are now four male heirs to the crown of Denmark alive. The treaty prescribes that if their extinction should become universal, the high contracting parties—namely, Austria, Prussia, Russia, England, France and Sweden—shall engage to take into consideration any further proposition made to them by the King of Denmark[b] for securing the succession on the principle of the integrity of the Danish monarchy. Should this remote contingency occur, the contracting powers would therefore meet again to settle the Danish succession, and I leave you to judge whether the Five Powers who signed the treaty of 8th May with Russia are likely in such a case to determine that, as head of the house of Holstein-Gottorp, she should annex to her dominions the whole of the present Danish monarchy.

"I have the honor etc.


The following is the answer of the Secretary to Lord Malmesbury's letter:

"My Lord: I am instructed by the Birmingham Conference to thank your lordship for your very important communication on the subject of the Danish Treaty. We gather from it that in the case of the expected failure of the four heirs to the United Monarchy of Denmark, England and Russia are pledged to interfere between the King of Denmark on the one hand, and the several States of Denmark, Schleswig and Holstein on the other. We are at a loss to know by what right such an interference can be justified, and we cannot but think the fact of war with Russia ought to be taken advantage of in order to enable us to abstain from so immoral and illegal action. You give us to understand that you think the character of the six Powers is a security against the admission of Russia to the whole succession in right, first, of Holstein-Gottorp, and secondly, of the principle of the integrity of the monarchy. We are most anxious to learn from your lordship who will come in for the whole if Russia does not, and, if England did not mean Russia to come in for the whole, why did she not make Russia's renunciation of Holstein-Gottorp a condition of the treaty? As your lordship signed the treaty in question, it is to be presumed either that these questions are unanswerable, or that your lordship will be the person of all others, best able to give to them a satisfactory answer. I am, therefore, instructed to request that your lordship will be so kind as to answer these questions, and thus relieve us from a source of great uneasiness. I have the honor to be, etc.,


The correspondence stops here—Lord Malmesbury not having felt inclined to go on. His Lordship's inability to answer those questions is, however, not without an excuse—the noble lord having found all points concerning the Danish Succession so well settled by Lord Palmerston's Protocol of July 4, 1850[d], that the Treaty required indeed his mere signature.

The second document is the report of the committee appointed by the Conference, on the famous Four Points[e][291]. I quote as follows[f]:

"In endeavoring to ascertain the character - of the Four Points as the basis of peace, your Committee have considered the development given to them by the Conference at Vienna, the amount of support or opposition that each proposal for such development has received from the respective Powers, the time and the manner in which the Points were first laid down by the Cabinets of England and France, the source from which they originally sprang, and their relevance to the avowed object of the War—viz., the Independence and Integrity of the Ottoman Empire. We find their source in the following proposition, laid down in the dispatch of Count Nesselrode, of June 29, 1854, and headed, 'Consolidation of the Rights of the Christians in Turkey': 'Setting out from the idea that the civil rights to be obtained for all the Christian subjects of the Porte are inseparable from religious rights, as is stipulated by the Protocol—and would in fact become valueless to our co-religionists if, in acquiring new rights, they should lose their old ones—we have already declared, that, if this were the case, the demands made by the Emperor[g] on the Porte would be fulfilled, the cause of the dispute done away with, and his Majesty would be ready to give his concurrence to a European guaranty for this privilege.'

"This proposal, which is a proposal for the perpetual interference, not of one, but of five Powers, in the internal affairs of Turkey, was accepted on the part of England and France, in the shape of what is now known as the Fourth Point, couched in the following terms by Drouyn de Lhuys, in his dispatch of 22d of July, 1854, which was the reply to Count Nesselrode: 'That no Power shall claim the right to exercise any official protectorate over the subjects of the Sublime Porte, to' whatever rights they may belong, but that France, Austria, Great Britain, Prussia and Russia, shall lend their mutual cooperation in order to obtain from the initiative of the Ottoman Government the consecration and observance of the religious privileges of the various Christian communities, and turn the generous intentions manifested by the Sultan[h] to the account of their various co-religionists, so that there shall not result therefrom any infringement of the dignity and independence of his crown.'

"The effect of the Fourth Point is to destroy the independence of the Ottoman Empire, which it is the avowed object of the war to defend, but its illegality consists in the fact that this proposed surrender has been made by England and France without the consent of Turkey, and persisted in by them in spite of Turkey's refusal to discuss the point at the Conference of Vienna. To use the words of Sidney Herbert, 'the matter is complicated by the fact that we are agreed with our enemy but not with our ally.'

"Had we been beaten in war by Russia and compelled to sue for peace we could not legally have made such a proposal on the part of another Power. In order to remove this illegality it would be necessary first for England and France to go over openly to Russia and to declare war against Turkey. As the Fourth Point is the surrender of the independence of Turkey, so the First Point is the surrender of her integrity; and, as in the Fourth Point, that surrender is made without the consent of the party concerned; such consent to the development of the First Point having been expressly reserved by the Turkish Plenipotentiary.

"We find that the separation of Wallachia, Moldavia and Servia from Turkey is concealed under the statement that they are still to be subject to the Porte.[...] The phrase, 'no exclusive protection shall in future be exercised over those provinces, ' is developed in five succeeding articles, which put the Five Powers in the same condition with the Porte as Joint Suzerain, and receives its finishing stroke from the proposal made by France and England at the sixth meeting of the Conference, that Wallachia and Moldavia should be united in a single State, under a hereditary Prince chosen from one of the reigning families of Europe. But the infamy of this surrender, alike of the avowed purposes of England, and of the rights of our ally—Turkey—is enhanced by the fact that it was made at a time when the armies of Russia were compelled to evacuate the Turkish territory, without the smallest assistance from the forces of England and France. As the surrender of the integrity and independence of the Ottoman Empire was thus made before the expedition to Sevastopol, it follows that this expedition must have been intended for the purpose of enforcing that surrender—enforcing it upon Turkey by exhausting her resources, enforcing it upon England by representing it as a triumph over Russia. We find this last view of the matter supported by Mr. Gladstone when he pointed out that Russia refused the Four Points before the expedition to Sevastopol, and accepted them afterward. [...]

"We cannot for a moment suppose that the English Cabinet was not aware that by substituting Austrian for Turkish soldiers in Wallachia and Moldavia they were setting free the Russian army to support Sevastopol, nor is the supposition that this was a concession to Austria, made for the purpose of obtaining her adherence to the Turkish cause, a tenable proposition in the face of the two facts that the nominal objects of our interference [...] were already on the one hand secured by the Turkish victories over the Russians, and on the other hand surrendered by the terms of peace already offered to Russia in the fourth and first points.[i]

"The second point was the free navigation of the Danube. The interruption of the navigation of the Danube dates from the cession by Turkey to Russia, at the Treaty of Adrianople in 1829, of the delta of the Danube—a cession which was contrary to the Treat; of London of July 6, 1827, which bound Russia to acquire no Turkish territory[292]. The acquiescence of England in this violation of public law was defended by her desire for peace—a pretense which is at all instances inconsistent with the existing state of war. The cession of the Danubian delta to Turkey was an indispensable demand in any real war of England against Russia. [...] It has, on the contrary, been made a means of injury to Austria. At the fourth meeting of the Vienna Conference, held March 21, 1855, Baron Prokesch, the Austrian Plenipotentiary, having proposed that Russia should admit the neutrality of the Danubian delta, the Russian Plenipotentiary[j] said 'that they would not consent to an arrangement which had the appearance of an indirect expropriation'. Lord J. Russell did not support the very moderate proposal of Austria, and the question was settled on the 23d of March in favor of the continued possession by Russia of the Danubian delta.[...][k]

"The Third Point is as follows: That the treaty of 1841 293 shall be revised by the high contracting powers in the interest of the European equilibrium, and in the sense of a limitation of Russian power in the Black Sea.

"To give sincerity and reality to the Third Point, it is necessary to divide it into two, and then correct the false terms of the Second Point. These two Points should he: First, the limitation of the power of Russia; second, the restoration of the rights of Turkey in the Straits of the Dardanelles and of the Bosphorus. Russia has not a natural preponderance in the Black Sea: she is not able to descend from Sevastopol and take possession of Constantinople and of Turkey; had she possessed this power she would have used it. [...] She must, therefore, have been withheld in the past, and can only continue to be withheld for the future by the impracticability of the undertaking. As a preparation for such an undertaking, she has robbed Turkey by treaty, not of her fair share of power in the Black Sea, but of the exclusive control of the Straits which command her capital in the Bosphorus, and which secure it at the Dardanelles. [...][l] For the restoration of the Sultan's exclusive control of the Straits, no stipulation was necessary; it reverts to him on the abrogation by the fact of war of the treaties by which it has been temporarily placed in abeyance. This simple view of the case has, however, not even been suggested at the Conference of Vienna. If we read the dispatch of 14th June, 1853, of Lord Clarendon to the Austrian Government, we shall find the reason in the words: the just claims of Russia. If the claims of Russia were just, and if England intended to support them, England should have declared war against Turkey. [...]"[m]

"With regard to the limitation of the power of Russia, your Committee would direct attention to the following memorable words of the Austrian plenipotentiary, Count Buol, in his letter of 20th May, 1855: 'In our opinion the joint efforts of the Allies should be directed to limiting the political power of Russia to such a point as to render the abuse of its material resources if not impossible, at least in the highest degree difficult. The diminution, nay, even the total destruction of the Russian fleet in the Black Sea, would not of itself suffice to deprive Russia of the advantage which she derives from her geographical position with regard to Turkey.'

"Of all the delusions attempted by the English Government upon Parliament, the only one which has failed has been the proposal for limiting the naval power of Russia in the Black Sea.[...] Had the war been intended as announced—to protect the integrity and independence of the Ottoman Empire—the terms of peace offered to Russia would have been: 1. Cession to Turkey of the Danubian Delta, which de jure it still has; 2. indemnification by Russia of the expenses of the war. [...]"

The Committee wind up their report as follows:

"Your committee find it impossible to reconcile these facts with the innocence of the British Cabinet[n]. It would be a want of discernment to suppose that all the members of the Cabinet have been thoroughly cognizant of the nature of their conduct. One cannot however overlook the preeminence of the four Foreign Ministers, Lord Clarendon, Lord Aberdeen, Lord John Russell, and above all Lord Palmerston, whose aid in securing the recognition of the Treaty of Adrianople, the payment to Russia, even in time of war, of the Russo-Dutch loan, the Treaty of Unkiar-Skelessi and of the Dardanelles, and the Treaty of Balta-Liman[294], and whose perfidy toward Poland, Hungary, Sicily and Italy, no less than his treachery toward France, Persia, Spain, and Denmark, point him out as the implacable enemy—not only of Turkey, but of every nation of Europe, the willing tool of Russia, and the master in the English Cabinet of those whom he has reduced to the condition of accomplices, and compelled previously to assist in the crimes which at first they wanted the intellect to detect, the honesty to resist, the courage to punish. In such punishment dealt out by the highest tribunal in the land, and with all the solemnities with which the ancient law and custom surrounded those impeached of high treason, your committee place their only hope of rescuing the people from the conspirators who have betrayed them to a foreign power."

Written on July 27 and 28, 1855
First published in the New-York Daily Tribune, No. 4464, August 10, 1855 as a leading article;
the German version was published in the Neue Oder-Zeitung, Nos. 349 and 351, July 30 and 31, 1855,
marked with the sign x
Reproduced from the New-York Daily Tribune


[a] Instead of the preceding text the Neue Oder-Zeitung has: "London, July 27. In contrast to the Administrative Reform Association, a State Reform Association[290] has been set up in London. It has included Ernest Jones and several other Chartist leaders in its Committee. At a public meeting which it held the day before yesterday it declared its principal aim to be a reform of Parliament on the basis of universal suffrage.

"The Birmingham Conference closed its deliberations on July 23. It was attended by delegates from Huddersfield, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, London, Halifax, Sheffield, Leeds, Derby, Bradford, Nottingham and Birmingham, who convened in Birmingham to form a judgment on the foreign policy of the ruling class and its representatives in Cabinet and Parliament. As the Birmingham Daily Press notes, the Chartists 'had refrained from involvement in any organised movement for years, but not in this. They took part in it heart and soul because they felt that it pursued no interest hostile or alien to them, indeed no class interest at all'.

"Urquhart's presence in the factory districts undoubtedly gave the impulse to this remarkable conference, whose sittings he attended to the very end. As lack of time prevented us from making use of the invitation to attend the conference, we are now presenting in extracts some interesting documents from the printed report of the Conference, which has been sent to us. The venal London press suppresses or distorts the facts. The following correspondence took place between the Earl of Malmesbury and the Secretary of the Committee appointed by the Conference:".—Ed.

[b] Frederick Frederick VII.—Ed.

[c] This and the following document are quoted from Birmingham Conference. Report of Committee on the Danish Treaty.—Ed.

[d] The final text of this Protocol was signed on August 2, 1850.—Ed.

[e] Birmingham Conference. Report of Committee on the Proposed Bases of Pacification known as "The Four Points". The quotations that follow are taken from that publication.—Ed.

[f] Instead of the last two paragraphs the Neue Oder-Zeitung has: "The correspondence naturally stops here although his Lordship could have pointed out that his participation in this business was purely formal. Palmerston and Baron Brunnow had already signed the Protocol that laid down the clauses and principles of the future treaty.

"The Conference had formed various committees to inquire into and report on different matters. Most important of all is indisputably the Memoir of the Committee on the Four Points, from which we quote the most important passages:".—Ed.

[g] Nicholas I.—Ed.

[h] Abdul Mejid.—Ed.

[i] The passage beginning with the words "We find this last view" and ending with the words "in the fourth and first points" does not occur in the Neue Oder-Zeitung. The rest of the German version of this article was published in the next issue of the Neue Oder-Zeitung, on July 31, 1855. It was introduced by the following words: "With reference to the second point the Birmingham document goes on to say:".—Ed.

[j] A. M. Gorchakov.—Ed.

[k] In the Neue Oder-Zeitung there follows a passage from the same document which was omitted in the New-York Daily Tribune: "After fully conceding this point to Russia, Lord john writes on the 12th April to Lord Clarendon:—'Count Buol told us he had not pressed the neutrality of the islands at the mouth of the Danube, as he was sure if he had done so, the Russian Minister would have broken up the conference...' On the 16th April, Lord John Russell telegraphed to Lord Clarendon that 'Austria will not support any demand for cession of territory;' and having first neglected to support Austria in the half measure of neutrality of the Delta, having then ascertained that she will not support the whole measure, namely, the cession of the Delta to Turkey, which had been put out of court by Lord John Russell's submission to Russia on the 23rd March, he then proposes to Lord Clarendon to demand 'The cession to Turkey of the islands at the mouth of the Danube surrendered by the treaty of Adrianople.'"—Ed.

[l] The passage beginning with the words "Russia has not a natural preponderance" and ending with the words "secure it at the Dardanelles" does not occur in the Neue Oder-Zeitung.—Ed.

[m] The last two sentences do not occur in the Neue Oder-Zeitung.—Ed.

[n] This sentence does not occur in the Neue Oder-Zeitung.—Ed.

[288] A German version of the article, dated July 27 and 28, 1855, was published in the Neue Oder-Zeitung under the heading "Birmingamer Konferenz.—Die dänische Erbfolge.—Die vier Garantien" ("The Birmingham Conference.—The Danish Succession.—The Four Guarantees") on July 30 and 31. It differs slightly from the English version in content and the way of quoting (as a rule, the quotations are more condensed and treated more freely). Where the German differs substantially from the English this is indicated in the footnotes. Marx's main sources were the reports of the committees of the Birmingham Conference, which were published soon after it ended on June 23, 1855.

Under the heading "The Birmingham Conference" the article was included in The Eastern Question.

[289] A reference to the London Protocol of May 8, 1852 on the integrity of the Danish monarchy (see Note 23↓).

[290] The State Reform Association was set up by the Left, radical wing of the bourgeois opposition in July 1855. In contrast to the Administrative Reform Association, it urged Parliamentary reform based on universal suffrage. The Radicals leading the Association sought an agreement with the Chartists, hoping to bring the working-class movement under their ideological and political influence. Jones, Finlen and other Chartist leaders became members of the Association's Executive Committee, but soon resigned under pressure from the Chartist rank and file, who realised the danger of the Radicals' gaining control of the Chartist organisation.

[291] The Four Points—demands made by the Western Powers on Russia as preliminary conditions for peace talks in their Note of August 8, 1854. Russia was required to renounce her protectorate over Moldavia, Wallachia and Serbia, which was to be replaced by an all-European guarantee; to grant freedom of navigation on the Danube; to agree to a revision of the London Convention of 1841 on the closure of the Bosphorus and Dardanelles to the warships of all nations in peacetime, and to renounce its protection of Christians in Turkey. The Tsarist government at first rejected the Four Points but in November 1854 was forced to accept them as the basis for future peace talks. The Four Points were discussed at the Vienna conferences of Ambassadors (see Note 34↓) but the attempts of the Western Powers to link the question of the Straits with demands for 'a reduction of the Russian Navy in the Black Sea caused the Russian Ambassador in Vienna, A. M. Gorchakov, to walk out of the talks.

[292] London Treaty of July 6, 1827—a reference to the convention signed by Britain, Russia and France confirming the St. Petersburg Russo-British protocol of April 4, 1826 which recognised Greece's right to autonomy. Like the protocol, the convention included an agreement on the diplomatic recognition of Greece and on armed mediation in the Greco-Turkish conflict. The contracting parties confirmed the commitment recorded in the protocol to seek no territorial or commercial benefits for themselves in pacifying Greece except such as were common to all European states.
The Treaty of Adrianople—see Note 22↓.

[293] The London convention of 1841—see Note 98↓.

[294] Russo-Dutch loan—see Note 24↓.
The Treaty of Unkiar-Skelessi—see Note 25↓.
The Treaty of the Dardanelles—presumably the London convention on the Straits of 1841 (see Note 98↓).
On the Balta-Liman Treaty see Note 22↓.

[22] The Treaty of Adrianople was concluded by Turkey and Russia in September 1829 following the war of 1828-29. Under the treaty Russia obtained the Danube delta including the islands, and a considerable part of the eastern Black Sea coast south of the Kuban estuary. Turkey was to recognise the autonomy of Moldavia and Wallachia, granting them the right to elect their own hospodars (rulers). Their autonomy was to be guaranteed by Russia. The Turkish government also undertook to recognise the independence of Greece, whose only obligation to Turkey was to pay an annual tribute to the Sultan, and abide by all the previous treaties relating to the autonomy of Serbia, which was to be formalised by a special firman.

The Balta-Liman Treaty, concluded by Russia and Turkey on May 1, 1849, laid down conditions for the continued presence of their troops in Moldavia and Wallachia, which had been occupied to suppress the revolutionary movement. Under the treaty, the occupation was to continue until the threat of revolution had been fully eliminated (the foreign troops were not withdrawn until 1851), for a certain period the hospodars were to be appointed by the Sultan in agreement with the Tsar. A series of measures by Russia and Turkey, including another occupation, were envisaged to provide for the eventuality of another revolution.

[23] On May 8, 1852, Russia, Austria, Britain, France, Prussia, Sweden and Denmark signed the London Protocol on the integrity of the Kingdom of Denmark. It was based on the protocol adopted by the same states (except Prussia) at a conference in London on July 4, 1850 and signed on August 2, 1850, which established the principle of the indivisibility of the Danish Crown possessions, including the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein. The London Protocol mentioned the Russian Emperor among the lawful claimants to the Danish Crown who had renounced their rights in favour of Duke Christian of Glücksburg, proclaimed successor to King Frederick VII (the Russian Emperor descended from Duke Charles Peter Ulrich of Holstein-Gottorp, who was Russian Tsar as Peter III). This created a precedent for Russian claims to the Danish Crown in the event of the Glücksburg dynasty dying out.

[24] Under an agreement signed by Russia, Britain and the Netherlands in London on May 19, 1815, Britain and the Netherlands had undertaken to compensate Russia's military expenses connected with the expulsion of Napoleonic troops from the Dutch and Belgian provinces by gradually repaying part of Russia's debt to the Dutch bankers Hope & Co. and the interest on that debt. A special clause stipulated that the payments would be discontinued in the event of a secession of the Belgian provinces from the Netherlands. After the 1830 revolution and the establishment of an independent Belgian state, the Netherlands stopped its payments. However, Palmerston signed a new agreement with Russia on November 16, 1831, confirming Britain's financial commitments.

[25] The Treaty of Unkiar-Skelessi was signed by Russia and Turkey on July 8, 1833. Prior to that, in the spring of the same year, Russian troops had landed in Unkiar-Skelessi, on the Bosphorus, to help protect the Turkish capital from the army of Ibrahim Pasha, son of Mehemet Ali, the ruler of Egypt who had rebelled against the Turkish Sultan. In May 1833, the Porte concluded peace with Mehemet Ali through the mediation of Britain and France, ceding Syria and Palestine to Egypt. However, the Tsarist government, taking advantage of the tense situation and the presence of Russian troops in Turkey, induced the Porte to conclude a defence treaty with Russia which contained a secret clause obliging Turkey to close the Straits to all foreign warships except Russian vessels. This clause remained in force until the Turko-Egyptian war of 1839-41, when Nicholas I reached agreement with Britain and other Powers on joint action against Mehemet Ali, but was compelled to agree to the closure of the Straits to the warships of all states in peacetime.

[34] A reference to the talks between the British, French and Russian Ambassadors and Austrian Foreign Minister Buol sponsored by Emperor Francis Joseph, which opened in December 1854. Their official purpose was to work out a basis for peace negotiations between the belligerents in the Crimean War. They were a sequel to an earlier round of talks between diplomats of the Western Powers, the Prussian Ambassador and the Austrian Minister (the Russian Ambassador refused to participate) held in Vienna in 1853-54 by way of mediation in the Russo-Turkish conflict. The second round failed to resolve the differences between the belligerents in the Crimean War. In mid-March 1855 representatives of Austria, Britain, France, Turkey and Russia met at a higher level at the Vienna Conference (Britain was represented by Special Envoy Lord John Russell, France by Foreign Minister Drouyn de Lhuys). That conference also produced no results.

[98] This refers to the London conventions of 1840 (see Note 20↓) and 1841. The latter was signed, on July 13, 1841, by Britain, Russia, Austria, Prussia and Turkey, and also by France which, faced with the prospect of an anti-French coalition, was forced to withdraw its support for the Egyptian ruler Mehemet Ali, who had attacked the Sultan, and join the Powers in backing the latter. The convention also stipulated that the Bosphorus and Dardanelles were to be closed to the warships of all Powers in peacetime.

[20] The Afghanistan campaigns—during the first Anglo-Afghan war (1838-42) in which Britain strove to establish colonial rule in Afghanistan, British troops invaded Afghan territory twice (in 1838 and 1842). Both invasions failed to achieve their purpose.

At the insistence of the British government, Britain, Russia, Austria and Prussia signed a convention in London on July 15, 1840, on military assistance to Turkey in its war against Egypt (1839-41). In the autumn of 1840 British and Austrian warships bombarded Beirut, Saint-Jean-d'Acre and other for-tresses on the Syrian coast, which had been captured by Mehemet Ali, the ruler of Egypt, between 1831 and 1833. Eventually Mehemet Ali was forced to relinquish his possessions outside Egypt and submit to the supreme authority of the Sultan.

Source: Marx and Engels Collected Works, Volume 14 (pp.394-400), Progress Publishers, Moscow 1980
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