Until now Finland has been resigned to all these disadvantages ; but these are increasing as reactionary tendencies grow upon the Russian Government. The St. Petersburg police find the protection accorded to individual liberty by the constitution daily more inconvenient. The arbitrary arrest, in 1882, of two Finland citizens at Helsingfors, the capital of the principality, called forth an energetic protest from the Senate. The reactionary party around Alexander III. is always working against the "un-just privileges " of Finland. The rigid protectionists, who have, these last few years, sacrificed all general political interests to those of the manufacturers of Moscow, sing the same song. In Moscow the competition of Finland is looked upon as insurmountable, and the Government, in its weakness, is beginning to multiply the barriers between the empire and the great principality.
Further, the Finlanders are asking themselves, again and again, this question: "What are we getting from Russia? What are the advantages to make us forget the inconveniences of our union with an arbitrary country?" Discontent, hitherto dumb, is being shown more and more frequently in hostile manifestations against Russia, and these manifestations, in their turn, are fresh reasons alleged in favour of a decisive policy by the Russian reactionaries.