Gibbon's stylistic artifice both averted the peril of prosecution and rendered the attack more telling.
He had not attempted to include in his calculations the orbital variations of the disturbing bodies; but Lagrange, by the happy artifice of transferring the origin of coordinates from the centre of the sun to the centre of gravity of the sun and planets, obtained a simplification of the formulae, by which the same analysis was rendered equally applicable to each of the planets severally.
Henry, who saw through the artifice, and was already looking round for a more popular successor to Wolsey, made the gracious answer that he would employ More otherwise.
The style of the whole book is nervous, vivid, free from artifice and rhetoric, obeying the writer's thought with absolute plasticity.
In this he succeeded, though not without a good deal of artifice, more creditable to his ingenuity than to his virtue.