European news.The steamship Norwegian, at Portland, Me., with dates to the 5th, brings the following news: There is a vague and doubtful report that a steamer, built at Liverpool, armed with twenty Blakeley 100-pounder guns, has gone to Gibraltar for an encounter with the Tuscarora. The French Mediterranean squadron was about to return to Toulon. Six vessels go to Cherbourg to escort the Emperor to England for the great exhibition. It is denied that General Donay, with his reinforcements for Mexico, has been ordered to return. The printers of Paris were on a strike, owing to the introduction of female labor. The Italian Ministry has been reconstructed Cordovi, Mancini, and Poggi, have resigned, succeeded by Mattericci, Minister of Public instruction; Durauds, Minister of Foreign Affairs; and Consolti, Minister of Justice Ralazzi retains the Interior. Garibaldi has arrived at Parma. Garibaldi has arrived at Parma. The Portuguese Ministry has been reconstructed.
Arrival of Cotton-Loaded vessels at Liverpool from Charleston.The brigs Adeline and Mary Wright both arrived at Liverpool on the 2d, having successfully run the blockade at Charleston, which port they left on the 2d of March. --They had between them about 1,400 bales of cotton, 200 boxes of tobacco, and a considerable quantity of rosin. They left Charleston in company with the bark Etewan and four schooners, all laden with cotton and rosin. They report the sunken stone fleet fast breaking up, Charleston harbor being full of floating timber. They also represent that Charleston and Savannah were well fortified, and in command of Gen. Lee.
Sir F. Smith called attention to the engagement between the Monitor and Merrimac, and urged the consideration of future prospects of defensive warfare. He urged the favor of small vessels, like the Monitor, in preference to stationary forts, and advocated the cessation of work on fortifications and the construction of iron gunboats or batteries instead. A general debate ensued, most of the speakers opposing outlay on fortifications. Sir G. C. Lewis and Lord C. Paget, on behalf of the Government, warned the House against hasty action and the enormous expense this revolution in naval warfare would entail. They questioned whether the Merrimac and Monitor had thrown any new fight on the subject, and thought forts could be made to maintain their superiority. They believed artillery could be made to crush these iron vessels. It would not do to proceed hastily, without further experience, but the Government would watch the question carefully. The subject dropped without action, but Mr. Bernal Osborne gave formal notice of a motion that it is expedient to suspend the construction of forts at Spithead until the value of iron-roofed gunboats for the defence of ports shall be fully considered. The newspapers were freely discussing the subject, and the London Times exhibits somewhat of a panic on it, urging that not a day should be lost, as wooden ships are clearly demonstrated to be wholly useless against iron, plated rams. Other journals and letter writers in abundance are also in favor of floating batteries. The question of iron batteries continues to attract great attention. Lord Bentinck had given notice in the House of Commons that he would move an amendment to Mr. Osborn's resolution, declaring it inexpedient to proceed with fortifications, to the effect that Government be empowered to apply the money voted for fortifications to the construction of iron-sheathed vessels. A motion in the House of Commons favorable to the reduction of fire duties was carried by a majority of eleven against the Government. Bull Run Russell's latest letters from Washington, harp upon the inefficiency of the American armies, owing to the lack of confidence in their leaders. The London Times says it is understood that orders were in the course of transmission to all dock-yards to suspend any further operations upon wooden vessels. The leading journals continue to urge editorially the necessity for iron fleets. The London Pott calls attention to the improvements American is making in ordnance, the weight of the shot thrown by the Monitor being nearly double that used on board any of the British ships. The steamer Mers, bound from Waterford to Bristol, was wrecked near Milford, during a gale and fog. About fifty lives were lost. The British exports for the first two months of the year are slightly in excess of the same period of last year. The official revenue tables are published, and regarded as satisfactory.
Paris Patris believes the French and Spanish Governments intend signing a new treaty for the regulation of joint action in Mexico. The Bourse is firm and higher, at 70f, 5 It is supposed that England withdraws from the expedition to Mexico, but there is no rupture between the allies. England abstains merely from interfering, the chief part of the expedition being now undertaken by France. Napoleon has written an autograph letter to Admiral La Graviere, disapproving his conduct. Napoleon has ordered a reduction of 37,000 men in the active army. Inquiries have been made in England by agents of the American Government as to the price of iron plates for ships. The London Times. (city article) says English funds opened yesterday at a further recovery of an eighth, prices being sustained by expectations of increased ease in the money market on the commencement of the payment of dividends on Wednesday next. Copenhagen, April 2.--The Minister of Marine stated to-day in the Council of State that he shall ask large credits for the construction of iron-plated ships. He promised that no more wooden men-of-war shall be built. The declaration was received with great satisfaction.
Commercial Intelligence.London Money Market.--On the 2nd instant console closed at 92½ a 93 7/8. Funds have been dull, but had an improving tendency at the close. Console advanced ½ on the 2d. There was less demand for discount at the Bank, and the supply larger in the open market. Gold continued to flow into the Bank. Liverpool Cotton Market, April 3.--The sales of the past three days sum up 12,000 bales, of which 3,000 were to speculators and exporters. The market closed with an upward tendency, but quiet at unchanged prices. Cotton.--The brokers circular reports the sales of the week at 32,000 bales, including 5,500 to speculators, and 7,500 to exporters.--The market advanced one eighth of a penny principally on the middle qualities, closing quiet. The sales to-day (Friday) are estimated at 5,000 bales, including 1,000 to speculators and exporters, the market closing firm at the advance. The authorized quotations are: