It was this threat of foreign intervention, rather than the clamour of the "Ultras," that forced Louis XVIII.
He was looked on by the ministerialists as the least unreasonable of his party, and by the "ultras" as the safest of their leaders.
After the murder of the duc de Berry and the enforced retirement of Decazes, he again became president of the council (21st February 1821); but his position was untenable owing to the attacks of the "Ultras" on the one side and the Liberals on the other, and on the 12th of December he again resigned.
The king had not yet, it is true, altogether committed himself to the clerical ultras, and on the occasion of the dispute about the bishops in Prussia in the same year had taken up a wise attitude of compromise.
The means by which they hoped to attain this end were a loyal application of the charter granted by Louis XVIII., and the steady co-operation of the king with the moderate Royalists to defeat the extreme party known as the Ultras, who aimed at the complete undoing of the political and social work of the Revolution.
In 1816 they obtained the co-operation of Louis XVIII., who had been frightened by the violence of the Ultras in the Chambre introuvable of 1815.
An attempt on the part of the Ultras to regain their ascendancy over the king, by conniving at the sudden return of Blacas from Rome to Paris, 3 ended in failure.
As the king became more and more infirm, his power of resistance to the intrigues of the Ultras became weaker.