said, he wished to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether his attention has been directed to the statement made in "The Daily Telegraph" newspaper of Monday, that the Emperor of the French had held a conversation with two Englishmen, which he authorized them to publish, and in which he stated that Count Bismarck had asked him what compensation France would expect if Germany was to annex Holland; and, whether he believes this statement to be authentic?
Sir, I did see in The Daily Telegraph the letter to which the hon. Gentleman refers, and I read it in common with many other very startling statements which appeared in the newspapers of yesterday. I am not aware that my opinion as to the authenticity of this document is more valuable than that of any other Member; but if my hon. Friend, is very desirous of hearing it, I hope he will not accuse me of any discourtesy if, under existing circumstances, I abstain from giving it to him.