THE United States at the outbreak of its epochal Civil War in 1861 was at peace with all the outside world and was nominally on terms of friendship with all nations. Various circumstances caused that friendship to be, however, somewhat less real than apparent, and there can be little doubt that some powers from the beginning looked upon the conflict among the States with indifference, while some would have been pleased to see the Southern Confederacy successful and the Union therefore dissolved. On the European continent the revolutionary movements of 1848 were still fresh in mind, and there was among the upholders of absolutism strong resentment against the United States for the sympathy which it had manifested toward them and for the asylum which it had given to innumerable political refugees; indeed, for the asylum which it was giving to those who in exile were still plotting or agitating against the regime from which they had fled. This feeling was strong in Austria because of the attitude of the United States toward Kossuth and the Hungarian rebellion, and also because of the sympathy which had been manifested here with Garibaldi and the Italian revolt against Austrian domination. It was perceptible in many other parts of the Continent, and was coupled with a willingness if not a desire to see republicanism fail in America in order that it might be discouraged and averted in Europe.
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