Marx-Engels Correspondence 1871

Karl Marx to Ludwig Kugelmann, 27 July 1871

Source: Karl Marx, Letters to Dr Kugelmann (Martin Lawrence, London, undated). Scanned and prepared for the Marxist Internet Archive by Paul Flewers.

Dear Kugelmann

Be so good as to send the enclosed note at once to Liebknecht. [1]

I find your silence very strange. I cannot think that the various packages of printed matter have all failed to reach you.

On the other hand it would be very foolish, if you wanted to punish me in this way for not writing – on the old principle of an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. Remember, mon cher, that if the day had 48 hours, in the last few months I would still not have finished my day’s work.

The work for the International is immense, and in addition London is overrun with refugees, whom we have to look after. Moreover, I am overrun by other people – newspaper men and others of every description – who want to see the ‘monster’ with their own eyes.

Up till now it has been thought that the growth of the Christian myths during the Roman Empire was possible only because printing was not yet invented. Precisely the contrary. The daily press and the telegraph, which in a moment spreads inventions over the whole earth, fabricate more myths (and the bourgeois cattle believe and enlarge upon them) in one day than could have formerly been done in a century.

My daughters have been for some months in the Pyrenees. Jennychen, who was still suffering from the after-effects of pleurisy, is, she writes me, getting visibly better.

Best thanks for your Germanic despatches.

I hope that you, as well as your dear wife and Fränzchen – whom I ask you to greet cordially – are well.

À propos! You were probably astonished to see that I made references to a duel in my missive to the Pall Mall. [2] The matter was quite simple. Had I not given the editor this excuse for making a few cheap jokes, he would simply have suppressed the whole letter. As it was he fell into the trap and achieved my real purpose – he published word for word the accusations against Jules Favre [3] and Co contained in the Address.



1. No indication is given as to the nature of the ‘enclosed note’ – MIA.

2. Marx’s letter was published in The Pall Mall Gazette, 3 July 1871.

3. Jules Favre (1809-1880) – French politician. Member of the Government of ‘National Defence’ in 1870-71. One of the bitterest enemies of the Commune – Marx-Engels-Lenin Institute.