Excerpt from History of Napoleon I
Placed in 177 7 at the military school of Brienne, Where he had Pichegru for a tutor and Bourrienne for a comrade, he applied him self assiduously to the study of history, geography, and mathematics. He was totally absorbed in the latter sci... ence and his taste for politics was even then very remarkable. De Bourrienne has furnished a lively account of his school days. He describes him as having a remarkably dark Italian complexion, quick, penetrating eyes, and a head dispro portioned to his diminutive body. He was also distinguished by his Corsican dialect, which was a source of ridicule to his companions. He soon, however, mastered the French language; but in classical and elegant literature he never acquired great proficiency. Plutarch, Tacitus, Polybius, and Arrian were his favourite authors. He was as fond of seclusion at Brienne as he had been in Corsica, and seldom associated with his fellow-students in their hours of recreation. But although he had few friends, he does not appear to have had any enemies in the school. His chief amusements consisted in the culti vation of a small plot of ground, of which one was assigned to each pupil, and in reading historical works.
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