He had not enough courage and perspicacity to await in patience the result of the race between France and Germany for the duchy of Milan - a contest which was decided at Pavia (Feb.
It is by sheer strength of thought, by the vigorous perspicacity with which he strikes the lines of cleavage of his subject, that he makes his way into the mind of the reader; in the presence of gifts of this power we need not quarrel with an ungainly style.
He never learned to read or write, though late in life he mastered colloquial Arabic; yet those Europeans who were brought into contact with him praised alike the dignity and charm of his address, his ready wit, and the astonishing perspicacity which enabled him to read the motives of men and of governments and to deal effectively with each situation as it arose.
Their obscure and knotty language only serves to give peculiar brilliancy to the not uncommon passages of noble perspicacity.
In 1793, while his recollections of the Revolution were still fresh, he wrote a novel, L'Emigre (Hamburg, 4 vols., 1797), which shows perspicacity and good judgment in its treatment of events.