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Bismarck’s Speech on the Prussian Indemnity Bill (September 1, 1866); Text of the Prussian Indemnity Law (September 14, 1866)

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II. The Prussian Indemnity Law (September 14, 1866)

Article I. The present law shall serve as an annex to the subjoining summary of the state’s income and expenditures for the years 1862, 1863, 1864, and 1865, instead of the constitutional and annual accounting for each fiscal year, as a basis for the accounting by the state administration.

Article II. The state administration grants indemnity with regard to the lawfully established and in due course publicized state budget, with the exception of the resolution of the Landtag on the release of the state administration from proposal of a yearly accounting, to such a degree, that, considering the responsibility of the state administration, it shall be held as if the stewardship had been managed in the above-mentioned time on the basis of a lawfully established and in due course publicized state budget.

Article III. The state administration is hereby empowered to expend a sum up to 154 million thalers for the year 1866.

Article IV. The state administration is bound to place before the Landtag an accounting of the state income and expenditures for the year 1866–1867.

Count. v. Bismarck-Schönhausen. Baron. v. d. Heydt. v. Roon.
Count. v. Itzenplitz. v. Mühler. Count. zur Lippe. v. Selchow.
Count. zu Eulenburg.

Source of English translation: Louis L. Snyder, ed., Documents of German History. New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1958, p. 210.

Source of original German text: “Gesetz betreffend die Ertheilung der Indemnität in Bezug auf die Führung des Staatshaushalts vom Jahre 1862 ab und die Ermächtigung zu den Staatsausgaben für das Jahr 1866, 14. September 1866,” [“Law Regarding the Apportionment of the Indemnity with Regard to the Management of the National Budget as of the Year 1862 and the Authorization of Government Spending for the Year 1866, September 14, 1866”] in Preußische Gesetzsammlung [Collection of Prussian Laws] 1866, p. 563; reprinted in Ernst Rudolf Huber, ed., Dokumente zur Deutschen Verfassungsgeschichte [Documents on German Constitutional History], 3rd rev. ed., vol. 2, 1851-1900. Stuttgart: Kohlhammer, 1986, pp. 102-03.

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