Copyright © The Malta Historical Society, 2005.

Source: Proceedings of History Week 1982. [Malta : The [Malta] Historical Society, 1983(1-19)]

[p.1] Art and Architecture in Malta in the Early Nineteenth Century

Michael Ellul

            The latter half of the eighteenth century in the European mainland was a period of great radical changes, of an intense intellectual revolution, and of a remarkable reversal of long-accepted ideas and concepts. There was no subject, philosophical, artistic, scientific or religious, which was not discussed, questioned and subjected to searching analysis and rigorous rationalization. Human inquiry into the principles of science, of natural phenomena, of Morality, of duties of rulers and of human rights, of education, of the influences of the past – these and other searching questions signalled the first stirrings of the Age of the Enlightenment, of the philosophies of Kant, Diderot and Rousseau, of d’Alembert’s and Diderot’s Encyclopédie, and, ultimately, of the French Revolution. This unprecedented intellectual activity erupted also in the Sciences: especially the momentous discovery of electricity, and the equally gigantic approach towards a rational understanding of chemistry. Literature was likewise revolutionized by the genius and penetrating intelligence of Goethe, Johann Schiller’s masterpieces on the aesthetic education of Man, Gray’s poetic gentleness, and purity of language, and Vittorio Alfieri’s deep hatred of political tyranny. [1]

            The question now naturally arises. What was the reaction of the exponents of the visual arts in the face of this intellectual upheaval? Risking a gross over-simplification to this complex question, one may broadly answer that the sense and sensibility of the state of the Arts in Europe of the time were similarly analysed and questioned. In the fields of Architecture, Painting and Sculpture, an accusing finger was pointed at the excesses of the Late Baroque and, especially, of the Rococo. The main criticism of the period, which the Age of Enlightenment engendered and encouraged, was that the Rococo had developed into the style of one class only, that of the rich, favoured a taste for luxury, encouraged triviality, and became therefore a symbol of the concept of easy living. [2]

            Neo-classicism, for this is how the new artistic movement came later to be called, can therefore be said to have been a reaction against frivolity, and as a universal harking, by the philosophers, writers, artists and scientists, after sound and solid artistic principles based on primitive laws, and nature.

            [p.2] The circumstances of the rejection of the Rococo may have differed from country to country, but the end result was the same everywhere – the emergence of a style, perhaps for the first time in the history of art, which was international in character. Internationalism in painting, sculpture and architecture, born with the neo-classicism of the 18th century, was to survive, although in new forms and styles, all through the 19th, and further on into our own century. [3]

            The return to Antiquity, which, after all, is what the rejection of the Baroque and Rococo really meant, introduced a new element in art – the imitation, not the copying, of nature. Antonio Canova, one of the greatest sculptors of all time, when faced with the Elgin marbles from the frieze of the Parthenon in 1815, exclaimed: “This is the beauty of form, inseparable from the beauty of nature.” This same age, and this is of exceptional importance to the artistic revolution of the time, witnessed a radical change in the attitude to artistic education with the appearance, or rather, the assertion of the Academies. Apprenticeship in the ‘botteghe,’ and artists’ followers, gave way to formal training, which included the Greek and Latin classics, and the basic reliance of artistic forms on simple geometric solids, as the cube, the sphere, the cone, the pyramid and the cylinder, the technique of casts from antique statues, and modelling from the nude in Academy classrooms. The Académie de France and the Accademia di San Luca, both in Rome, were the two European institutions mainly responsible for the greatest artistic achievements of the age. [4]

            To these two Academies, highly gifted young men flocked to Rome from all over Europe. In Rome they studied the antique monuments, which they surveyed and measured, drew, sketched, engraved, or lithographed. Piranesi was the greatest of them all, and his volumes of engravings such as Antichita' Romane, Vedute di Roma, etc., fired the enthusiasm of students and artists. Parallel with this, and of remarkable significance to the proper understanding of the new movement, was the ‘re-discovery’ of the antiquities of Greece: for the first time, Greek architectural styles moved alongside with the Roman. The temples on the Acropolis were studied and surveyed in depth, and Greek art, always subservient to the Roman ever since Vitruvius wrote his Ten Books of Architecture in the first century BC, became now equal if not superior to that of Rome. [5] The controversy between Greeks and Romans became a heated argument amongst art scholars. The choice in England was definitely for Greece, and the real reason is not hard to seek: the Baroque and the Rococo [p.3] there never had real roots, and therefore their rejection was effortless.

            It is, to say the least, ironical that in Italy, in whose Academies the movement was born, neo-classical architecture found feeble following: the little there is, is mainly due to French influence, and is of a much later period than in other European countries: the Foro Bonaparte in Milan (1806), Piazza del Popolo in Rome (1813-31), and the Teatro San Carlo in Naples (1810-12), being outstanding examples. [6]

            In England, neo-classicism followed the belief that architecture had been at its best in its simplest and most primitive forms. This concept gave birth to the Doric Revival, pioneered by James Stuart (1713-88), nicknamed The Athenian, whose Greek temple at Hagley in Worcestershire (1758), Triumphal Arch, Tower of the Winds and the Temple of Lysicrates (all betwen 1764 and 1770), are his best works. Thus, in France, in England, in Scotland, in Germany, to a limited extent in Italy, and even in the newly constituted United States of America, the artistic morphology of Greece and Rome, but especially of Greece, dominated the period. Motivation naturally differed from country to country. In France, Napoleon’s painters and architects preferred the decorative grandeur of Roman antiquity as a fitting backdrop to the Empire, and as a tribute to the Emperor’s personality. Schinkel in Germany, perhaps the greatest exponent of neo-classical architecture in Europe, captured the real spirit of the new art, basing his style on elementary geometric forms and shunning unnecessary ornamentation. The neo-Classical Doric Revival movement in Britain, which later found a ready echo in Malta, represented a style which was at once solid, severe, and above all virile, no doubt inspired by the yearning after glory of the great empire-builders.

            Whilst Europe was generally feeling the advent of neo-classicism from about the 1750s, Malta was still basking in the glory of the Baroque. The Auberge de Castille, probably the finest building in Malta, was, at about the same period being re-constructed and re-modelled by Domenico Cachia in 1744; Francesco Zerafa in 1748, and after him Giuseppe Bonici or Bonnici in 1760, were working on the Castellania. The common denominator of these two buildings is the concentration of a mass of ornamentation at their centres. At the Castille, the rich central focus is obtained by a magnificent doorway linked vertically to an elaborate central window, capped in turn by Pinto’s ostentatious coat-of-arms, and a crowning centre-piece with the Langue’s heraldic paraphernalia. At the Castellania, the focus of attention is again the centre, made up of a triple concave doorway, a rich main window and balcony, and a segmental cornice which gently contains the upward sweep of the centre-piece.

            Towards the last quarter of the eighteenth century, the wind of change [p.4] from the Roman Academies and the European neo-Classical School started reaching our shores. Giuseppe Bonnici, probably the last exponent of the monumental Baroque, was caught in the cross-current of the European movement and in 1774 commenced the first true product of Academism in Malta, his Customs House at the Valletta Marina. Gone is the rich ornamentation of the earlier Valletta buildings, and Bonnici here relies for architectural effect on a remarkable arrangement of shallow projecting and re-entrant pilasters alternated with bays on two floors, with the south doorway and windows, devoid of all sculpture, and almost timidly concealed inside arched semi-circular recesses. At the Bibliotheca, constructed on the design of Stefano Ittar [7] in 1786, and the last important building of the Knights, the architecture is again predominantly academic, but more elegant than Bonnici’s, for obvious reasons. Decoration is kept to a minimum and restricted to unobtrusive parts of the building; the building is symmetical, orderly and controlled: the desired effect is obtained by the judicious use of coupled columns and an open gallery at street level, and coupled pilasters in the overlying floor. The motifs of the ceiling of the gallery, as well as the stucco-like decoration in the entrance hall and staircase, are far removed from the Baroque.

            Another remarkable feature at both the Customs and the Bibliotheca is the complete omission, perhaps for the first time in Valletta’s monumental architecture, of the massive corner pilasters, a courageous innovation indeed by Bonnici and Ittar.

            Between the years 1798 and 1800, the years of the French occupation, new building in Malta naturally came to a standstill. To make matters worse, one of the very first acts of Napoleon on June 13th 1798, a couple of days [p.5] after his arrival, provided for ‘the defacement of all heraldic coat-of-arms within twenty-four hours.’ [8] This was, obviously, physically impossible when one thinks that for two hundred and seventy years, the Knights of St John had carved or painted their heraldry in innumerable palaces, churches, fortifications and private dwellings of their property, both on the inside of buildings as well as on the exterior walls; and, in fact, this operation of destruction was still going on certainly as late as the end of September of 1798. Antonio Cachia, Capo Maestro of the Order, son of the great Domenico, and Perito Agrimensore and Calcolatore since 1761, [9] and now described in the Minutes of the Deliberations of the French Republican Government as ‘architecte des biens nationaux,’ had the unpleasant but lucrative task of supervising the obliteration of the arms of his masters and employers of yesterday. [10] But matters appear to have slightly improved, because on July 1st 1798 another decree directed ‘that this work shall be carried out in those places and public monuments in such a way that the sculptured surrounds, and the paintings, etc., shall not be damaged, and great care should be taken to combine with great prudence the conservation of precious works of art in conformity with the carrying out of the present order.’ [11] But it was already too late, and the damage had been done. Citoyen Architect Antonio Cachia was later employed by the French on work more ethical to his profession, and on August 22nd of the same year was entrusted with the drawing up of a report on the [p.6] Women’s Hospital in Valletta and the adjacent Casa delle Alunne (a home for illegitimate infant girls). Cachia presented a detailed report which throws interesting light on construction methods and on prices of building materials at the time. [12] He continued his career as Capo Maestro, [13] and later as Maestro Muratore under the British. [14]

            We now come to a period of art history in Malta which has been generally neglected by historians. The reasons are many, but none of them is valid. Many seem to believe that art and especially architecture in our country ceased with the departure of the Knights; others, for political reasons, decry the advent of a new culture alien to the traditional one, [15] which, however, was threatening stagnation after almost three centuries of a single source of influence. Be it as it may, the month of September of the year 1800 witnessed another change of flag in Malta, which, naturally, brought with it new influences in all fields. We are here only concerned with the impact on our artistic and architectural climate. As already hinted earlier on, Britain’s political dominance and her plans for imperial expansion served as an urge to the British at home to emerge from their artistic isolation and inferiority, and introduce a national school like those on the continent, as well as to create a style which could be identified with their ever growing imperial glory. By 1800, the Greek Doric style had firmly established itself and gained great popularity. To the British, it represented the purest style of Architecture, undiluted by unnecessary encumbrances, and representative of the fusion of built-form with the natural landscape.

            The British Government, suitably represented in Malta by hand-picked administrators of trust, acumen, and, above all, unbounded patriotism and loyalty to the Mother Country, with the Colonial Office proverbial political shrewdness and sagacity, did not try to impose the new culture by forceful means or vexatious methods. Instead, they gradually introduced their new concepts by letting things be till a favourable circumstance presented itself; by infiltrating into the public service local professional and technical men with a propensity to novel ideas; and by keeping open for suitable Maltese rewards in the form of patronage, and consequent advancement, which would create fertile ground for consolidating British rule. [16] Certain events of major artistic importance, such as the passing through Malta of the famous Elgin marbles from Athens to London, served as an impetus to the Maltese for a [p.7] greater artistic awareness, and to the British to impress by the concrete image of a new culture.

            The Government, immediately after the French capitulation, divided the public works sector into three branches: the civil, the ordnance or military works under the Royal Engineers, and a third branch for the navy depart ment. [17] During the first years of the British in Malta there were few instances of new building, since the needs of the Civil Government were more than satisfied by the numerous and large buildings left by the Knights. The need for the full-time employment of a qualified architect did not therefore exist, but only that of a good builder with some knowledge of civil engineering to take care of maintenance and repairs. [18] The civil department of works was, however, supervised by four administrators, only one of whom was a professional, Antonio Cachia. He was responsible for the re-modelling of Lower Argotti Gardens, the numerous gardens and houses of the Luogotenenti dei Casali (many of which still survive, at Żejtun, Qrendi, Gargur, Gudja and elsewhere, known as Il-Ġnien tal-Kmand), the Floriana Granaries, the modelling of the Floriana Grain Magazine (now Middle Sea House), and a market, also at Floriana, – all modest projects which gave little opportunity to their architect to demonstrate his ability. [19] In those instances where works involving interior decoration was required, the professional services of the Corps of Royal Engineers were sought. Amongst such works one can mention some alterations in the Manoel Theatre, the colonnade in the Palace of San Anton and in the adjacent gardens, and a protestant church which was, however, suspended. The fact that these officers were British-trained is amply demonstrated in the decoration of the Grand Council Chamber of the Magisterial Palace, almost a replica of a Robert Adam interior, which was mercifully later restored. The officer responsible for these works was Colonel (later Major-General) George Whitmore, Commander, Royal Engineers. [20]

            A very significant milestone at the time was the re-opening of the University by Sir Alexander Ball, and the appointment of Mgr Francesco Saverio Caruana as its Rector, on October 28th, 1800, [21] only a few weeks after the French capitulation. In 1802, Caruana set up in the University, for the first time in its history, the School of Drawing, which taught Design, Painting, Sculpture and Architecture. Reference will now be made to a very interesting document, an anonymous manuscript, up to now, as far as I know, unpublished, written in Italian, and entitled in translation ‘Report on the State [p.8] of the Schools of Design in the University of Malta between 1802 and 1850.’ [22] The school was the brain-child of Mgr Caruana, a Maecenas of the Arts, and, ‘to whom should be for ever attributed the honour of being the first to introduce in the curriculum of studies of Public Instruction a School of Design.’ This he succeeded in doing with the full support of Bishop Labini and, of course, of Alexander Ball. The prospectus invited all parents to encourage their sons, and all artists to urge their apprentices, to join the school. The Report throws interesting light on the current state of the Arts in Europe. It unreservedly blames the Barrochismo of having destroyed not only the concept of pure art, but also the very norms required to re-establish the lost artistic standards. It praises the Academies of Rome, and explains how the influx of young artists to Rome from all parts of Europe, had revolutionized European artistic thinking. It goes on to say: ‘It is opportune now to state that nothing is known in Malta about this Movement which has produced such a drastic revolution in the arts, or about the method of imparting teaching of the arts, in spite of the fact,’ the writer complains, ‘that books on The Antiquities of Herculaneum and of the Pio Clementino Museum, the gifts of the Pope and of the King of Naples, exist for consultation in our Bibliotheca of Valletta... No one, other than Mgr Caruana, could have profited more from a thorough study of these books, and thus recognize the great need for a School of Design.’ [23]

            The response to Caruana’s appeal was most encouraging, and a considerable number of young men joined the course. Reaction from the general public was also positive. There appears, however, to have been serious divergence between Mgr Caruana and the teaching methods of some of his lecturers, for the Report complains that the School became, after a short period, one for painters only, with grave shortcomings in the teaching of Architecture. In fact, young men finishing from the School and proceeding to Rome to further their studies, were advised in the Academies to adopt a completely different style from that which they had studied in Malta. After this bitter lesson, continues the Report, the teacher of drawing who was getting on in years, was assisted by another mentor, who took care to raise the standard of teaching in architecture. The students had lacked preparatory training before going to the University, and the Royal Commission, as late as 1836, made reccomendations to remedy this anomaly which, the Report complains, had not been yet rectified by 1848, when the School was still producing good painters, but not good architects. [24]

            [p.9] A short analysis of the Report would perhaps now be necessary. The Professor of Drawing, presumably the one who comes under fire in the Report, was Michele Busuttil, appointed by Ball immediately on the re-opening of the University, on November 1st 1800. [25] Irrespective of his presumed shortcomings as teacher in the course of Design of which Architecture formed part, Busuttil was undoubtedly a good painter. He had studied in the Accademia di San Luca, and on two different occasions carried off the coveted biannual prizes awarded to the very best amongst hundreds of students attending the Accademia from all over Europe. In September of 1783 he won second prize for his drawing in pencil and chalk representing the statue of Antinoo, [26] then, as now, preserved in the Hall of Gladiators at the Capitoline Museum. In 1782 he was awarded second prize, this time in the so-called Concorso Clementino, instituted by Pope Clement XI, for a drawing of a draped figure from life. [27] In Malta, Michele Busuttil, where he returned before 1798, is credited with a large number of paintings, foremost amongst which are Aeneas, Ajax after the Shipwreck, St Mary Magdalen and Orlando Furioso, all painted for The Palace, and religious canvases for the Parish Churches of Vittoriosa, Żejtun, and the Gozo Cathedral. [28]

            The man sent to assist Busuttil at the School of Design was Giorgio Pullicino who joined the University in November of 1803. [29] Pullicino was born in Valletta in July 1779, [30] and after attending a local private school of Drawing, went to the Accademia di San Luca at the early age of 15. [31] Between 1792, and 1800 he immersed himself in serious studies, especially the works of Raphael and Titian. [32] He attended classes in Anatomy and Dissection, and came to know personally that giant of sculptors, Antonio Canova, an Accademico of San Luca. [33] Study of the Nude from life had been introduced at the Accademia by a Brief of Pope Benedict XIV in April of 1754. [34] [p.10] Before this date, artists in Rome used to frequent the French Academy, then in Via del Corso, where modelling of male nude models had been the normal practice for some time. [35] Three years after his arrival in Rome, at the age of only eighteen, Pullicino won the first prize in September 1797 with a draped figure from life, in pencil and chalk, [36] under sculptor Agostino Penna. Penna, an Accademico of San Luca and one of the foremost Roman artists of his time, has his works in many Roman churches, including a statue of Pius VI in the Sacristy of St Peter’s at the Vatican, and of Maria Odescalchi-Chigi at Santa Maria del Popolo, as well as sculptures in the Villa Borghese. [37] In March 1799 Pullicino was awarded second prize for a pencil and chalk drawing of a nude from life, [38] under Domenico de Angelis, a famous Roman painter who specialized in fresco works. His works are still to be found in many Roman palaces and villas, especially the Villa Borghese. [39] Again, in September 1799 Pullicino carried off another second prize with a drawing of a nude figure, and finally in March 1800 with another pencil and chalk drawing of a model from life. During his stay at the Accademia, Pullicino won another prize in September 1799, [40] and also in March 1800. [41] Soon after, and surprisingly while the French were still in Malta, Pullicino somehow contrived to reach the Island. [42] He went to live in his father’s house at No 117, St Paul Street, Valletta. In 1803, having found favour with both Ball and Caruana, [43] he was offered the post of Professor of Drawing at the University of Studies. His salary amounted to the princely sum of 20 scudi a month (£l.66c in present currency), [44] and he was forced to look for other means of livelihood to survive. Pullicino was also obliged to sell some paintings from his collection, which he had either inherited from his father who died some time before 1807, or else had brought with him from his Roman sojourn, to 1812 for the total sum of 185 scudi. Two of these are still to be found in the Marchesi collection at the Cathedral Museum. [45] Pullicino married at [p.11] the age of 28 in 1807, [46] and continued to live in his late father’s house. Now, more than before, he had to supplement his meagre salary by painting and selling views of Malta. In a Guide of Malta, we are told that ‘from here (the University building in St Paul Street) we pass to the Studio of design and architecture of Mr Pullicino. The Studio of this able artist is visited by all foreigners who come to Malta, and every one feels much gratified. Near the same, are to be sold some beautiful views, not only of the part of Malta and the City of Valletta, but also of the Giants’ Tower in Gozo, and Maltese costumes.’ [47] Pullicino had seven children, one of whom became a priest, another, Giovanni Battista, a professor of Mathematics at the University of Malta, Raffaello, an architect, and a daughter, Clara, [48] who married the renowned Dr Tommaso Chetcuti who, ‘may very well be called the pioneer Maltese psychiatrist in the sense that he was the first Maltese physician to make a serious study of mental disorders, and to devote the greater part of his life and energy to the care and treatment of the mentally sick.’ [49] At the University, with the co-operation of Mgr Caruana, Pullicino introduced the study of the human figure from the nude, but this practice was later abolished. [50] He also set up a private school at his own residence, which was frequented not only by young students, but also by established artists. [51] It is indeed sad for a man of such merit that he never had the opportunity to leave for posterity any monumental or other large building. In 1804, he submitted a drawing for the Porto Salvo Church in Valletta [52] after the existing one was condemned as dangerous and pulled down, but Antonio Cachia’s Baroque design was preferred to Pullicino’s. Pullicino’s original drawing, an astoninglishly outstanding specimen of draughtsmanship, now in a private collection, is also Baroque in conception, but a restrained one, and with a multitude of neo-classic elements. He also submitted a design for Mosta Church, most probably in competition with Grognet, and another for a minor church in the village of Luqa. [53] Surprisingly enough it was only as late as 1830, when he was already 51 years old, and when his term of office at the University was coming to an end, that he petitioned the Government to be allowed to ‘practise the profession of architect and land surveyor generally in these [p.12] possessions’ [54] Pullicino, even if at the time occupying the position of Professor of Drawing and Architecture at the University, had had to be examined, in the presence of the Collector of Land Revenue, of which the Works Department then formed part, by the Capo Maestro and Perito Michele Cachia (the senior Government architect), and ‘has been found sufficiently versed in all requirements of a Perito both in Theory and Practice to enable him to act in that capacity for the Public.’54a Giorgio Pullicino spent 40 out of his life of 72 years teaching and painting, and his landscapes and water-colours of local costumes still abound in large quantities at The National Museum of Fine Arts and in private collections. He was also a devoted patriot, and was the representative of the Maltese body of architects, [55] and one of the principal signatories of a Petition placed before the Royal Commission of 1836 for presentation to the House of Commons. [56] He retired from the University in 1839 on reaching the age of 60. He was granted a pension of less than £2 per month for his service of nearly 40 years with the Government. He continued to work in his studio for another three years, when he was struck by an illness which for the remaining eight years of his life confined him to his home. He died in poverty unhonoured and unsung by his countrymen. To their eternal shame, none of the newspapers of the time published even one line to record his death.

            The only work which can be historically proved to be Pullicino’s is the monument to Capt. Spencer of the Royal Navy, originally erected at Corradino in June 1831, [57] and removed to Blata-l-Bajda in 1893. [58] Pullicino, with his Roman training, was faithful to the classical definition of ‘obelisk,’ which is a funerary monumental pillar, of nearly square section, generally 10 diameters in height, sides tapering upwards very gradually and evenly, and terminated by a pyramidion whose faces are inclined at 60 degrees. Usually raised on pedestals of cubical form resting on one or two steps. [59] Ball’s monument in the Lower Barracca, although no ireffutable documentary proof has yet come to my knowledge, may, with almost absolute certainty, be [p.13] attributed to Pullicino. Serious writers like Temi Zammit, [60] and others, [61] without however quoting sources, recognize him as its architect. Faure’ attributes it to Col. Whitmore of the Royal Engineers. [62] This theory can be straightaway discarded, since according to official records preserved in London, Whitmore arrived in Malta in Febuary 1812, [63] whereas the monument had already been built in 1810. Pullicino had been Ball’s protégé since his arrival in Malta in 1800, and it is natural that he would have shown special interest in involving himself in his benefactor’s memorial. At the time of the erection of Ball’s monument, Pullicino was Professor of Architecture, along with Michele Busuttil and Vincenzo Dimech. [64] Busuttil can be ruled out as his knowledge of the English Doric Revival was practically nil. Dimech is the author of the sculpture of the frieze and of the four exquisite draped figures of unmistakeable Greek inspiration representing War, Prudence, Justice and Immortality. [65] The committee of the ‘16 deputies of the nation’ who petitioned Mr Chapman, temporarily administering the Government after Ball’s death, for a monument in his memory, could not but have chosen a Maltese prominent architect for its design. Along with the Petition dated 22nd December 1809, [66] less than 2 months after Ball’s death, the Deputies also presented the architect’s drawing, [67] for which I have looked in vain for a long time both here and in London. The Doric style was very popular in England at the time, and Ball’s monument represents in Malta the first example ever of the new fashion, that of integration with the landscape; one must remember that the Lower Barracca was then only a barren piece of land, and not the planted garden we know today. Ball’s monument was the first isolated building, free from all adjuncts, set in a wide open space, and related only to the ground on which it rests. The idea of Romanticism was completely new to Malta.

            Pullicino established himself as the only outstanding architect of the neoclassic in the early nineteenth century, and was undoubtedly its most eminent exponent during nearly half a century of teaching. Many well-known architects [p.14] and master-builders of later generations had been his pupils, amongst whom were Raffaele, his own son, Ovidio Doublet who won a Gold Medal in the Exhibition of 1864, Gaetano Xerri the architect of Bighi Hospital, Don Salvatore Bondin, an architect responsible for many churches in Gozo, and Mastru Anglu Gatt of Mosta Dome fame. [68] The story of Pullicino is therefore the history of the greater part of Malta’s architecture of the first three or four decades of the 19th century. The Main Guard Portico, often attributed to him, is still open to discussion as regards autorship. It is a purely military building, and it is certain that the project was carried out by the Royal Engineers. In a letter preserved at the Public Record Office dated August 1812, [69] and addressed to the Head of Ordnance from the Inspector General of Fortifications at the War Office in London, reference is made to “a Report and Plan from Capt. Whitmore for a Portico to the Riserva or Main Guard of that Garrison of Malta and stating the probable cost of same at £200.” A PS at the foot of the letter is added: “I return the Plan or drawing which accompanied your letter.” The fact that the plan was sent to the War Office by Whitmore for approval, does not necessarily mean that he had made the design himself: on the other hand it could well be that as Head of the REs in Malta he submitted to the War office a drawing made by one of his employees. [70] Hoping against hope, some public spirited person who might have the original of these plans in his private collection or knowing of their whereabouts, might perhaps one day, come forward and publish the information without the need of revealing his identity. I personally hold that the Main Guard portico is Whitmore’s work: he was certainly well-trained professionally to do the job. Besides, who but a worthy son of Albion could be entrusted with the privilege of asserting the British presence in Malta by the use of England’s current style, by the Royal coat-of-arms and the famous inscription, now sadly covered, in the most important and symbolical square in Valletta as a lasting monument to the new British culture? As regards the exedra at Fort St Elmo, again a military establishment, in a plan of the Fort at the Public Record Office dated 1836, [71] only the semicircular space is shown but not the collonade itself, although this could be a deliberate omission, since the plan was meant for a particular purpose only. Villa Frère at Pietà has also been sometimes attributed to Pullicino. John Hookham Frère, who built the villa and gardens in the 1820s, [72] counted [p.15] among his friends Whitmore (they were both Freemasons of the same Lodge), [73] Pullicino and Grognet, [74] and received regularly in his salon many Maltese connected with art and architecture, especially after his nomination to the Chairmanship of the newly-created General University Council by Hastings in 1823, [75] when he came naturally to know personally all University teachers. The authorship of this little gem of neo-classic architecture, now painfully falling into ruins, beckons further investigation.

            The other, and last, building attributed to Pullicino is the University Gate in St Paul Street. This gateway was opened in a blank patch of walling so as to provide a separate access to University under-graduates who had up to then used the Lyceum Merchants’ Street Gate on their way to the lecture-rooms. Panzavecchia attributes the gate, built in May 1824, [76] to Whitmore. [77] This is extremely unlikely, and it is reasonable to assume that any work in the University, a civil establishment, would have been entrusted to one of the professors teaching architecture in that Institution. Stylistically, the work belongs to Pullicino, who must have been influenced by the famous Hotel d’Hallwyl in Paris built in 1766 by the French architect Claude-Nicholas Ledoux, whose works were widely studied in the Roman Academies when Pullicino was still at San Luca. [78]

            Vincenzo Dimech, (1768-1831) another among the stalwarts of Maltese art of the period, was a colleague of Pullicino, and taught sculpture at the University at least since 1806, [79] and possibly earlier, but apparently without any official nomination on the regular establishment. His works include, as already mentioned, all statues and sculpture in Ball’s monument, and numerous religious statues spread all over the Island, the most famous of which being the titular parish statue of St Publius at Floriana, and the marble statue known as Il-Madonna tan-Nofs in Senglea. [80] Dimech remains perhaps best known for his work on the monument at the Upper Barracca erected in 1824 on the initiative of Governor Maitland to the memory of Sir Joseph Nicholas Zammit, Vice-President of the Court of Appeal, and Member of the Supreme Council [p.16] of Justice. [81] The monument is also important because of the fact that its design was executed by public competition, [82] possibly for the first time in Malta. A contemporary article stated that the ‘Monument has given an opportunity to our local Maltese artists to display their talent ... and (is) a respectable specimen of the state of the arts in this Island. It consists of a pedestal ornamented with fasces (the classical emblem of the magistrates of ancient Rome) which supports a colossal figure of the late Judge Zammit, in a curule chair (the chair of honour of the higher magistrates of senatorial rank during the Roman Republic), and in the act of expounding the law.’ ‘The pedestal,’ it continues ‘rises from a stylobate on each extremity of which is a lion, emblematic of the British Power and of the security afforded by its vigilant protection. The sculptors employed were Vincenzo Dimech for the Statue and Ferdinando Dimech (Vincenzo’s second cousin) for the Lions. The execution of these figures is highly creditable to these artists, and we feel justified that upon examination they will be found to justify our commendation of their ability.’

            The Lions were modelled on Antonio Canova’s much-copied lions of his monument to Pope Clement XIII in St Peter’s in Rome; a copy in chalk was brought to Malta for the purpose. It was still kept at the University till a few years ago, and was subsequently at the Government School of Art until very recently. It has now been returned to the Old University Building in Valletta. Vincenzo Dimech made a name for himself also outside Malta. He was responsible for all the sculptural work in the Royal Palace at Corfù. The Palace was built at the behest of the British Government and commissioned by Thomas Maitland, Civil High Commissioner for Malta and the Ionian Islands, to commemorate the creation by the Sovereign of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1818. It was designed and constructed by Col. Whitmore. It is interesting to note that Malta stone and Maltese labour were employed to a large extent on its construcion. [83] It is ironical that the first specimen of Neo-Classical Greek Revival on Greek territory (although at the time a British Protectorate) was built by foreign architects, labour and material. Dimech was a frequent visitor to Corfù and carried out all the sculptural work, again along with Ferdinando, and with Corfù sculptor Paul Prossolentis, [p.17] especially on the exquisite interiors. [84] Possibly also belonging to the hammer and chisel of Vincenzo Dimech are the British coat-of-arms surmounting the portico of the Main Guard, those above Neptune’s Courtyard in the Palace, in the University Gate, the old Marina Gate, and in Porta Reale, all installed as a result of Governor Maitland’s Proclamation No. VI of 1814.

            Salvatore Dimech, (1805-1887), not yet established whether a relation to the other Dimechs, was another sculptor of standing during the same period. Salvatore was a self taught artist without any formal training. An official document of 1838 says of him that ‘endowed by nature with every talent for a sculptor, although without any instruction, does not confine himself to ornamental work, but has advanced to the execution of the human figure, which comprehends the most difficult parts of the art.’ [85] His is the statue of St Francis in the piazza of the Capuchin Convent at Floriana. His also is the figure of St Gregory the Great, seated in a chair expounding the Holy Scripture, in front of the Church of St Gregory at Żejtun, ‘after a design and under the direction of Giuseppe Hyzler, completed in the short period of 50 days in which he was obliged to finish the work,’ [86] Another interesting work of Salvatore Dimech is a copy in Malta stone of Canova’s famous statue of Hebe, commissioned in 1838 by the Duca Sforza Cesarini, one of the scions of Roman aristocracy, then living with his wife in Malta. [87] ‘The Duca Sforza Cesarini,’ says an official document of the time, ‘has not thought this production of rustic talent unworthy of a place in his residence at Rome’ where he took it in 1839. [88] Unfortunately, all my efforts to locate and view the statue, if it still survives, have so far proved fruitless.

            The only neo-classical monument in St John’s co-Cathedral was erected to the memory of the Vicomte de Beaujolais, brother of King Louis Philippe of France, who died in Malta in 1808. The work is by the famous French Academician Jacques Pradier and is typical of sepulchral monuments of the period, very similar in style to Canova’s memorial to Pope Clement XIV. [89] Various other monuments, raised in memory of British navy and army officers during this time, elicited a remark by an English visitor to Malta, that since ‘the English became masters, the proud bastions of Valletta have become sepulchral,’ [90] and from yet another one that ‘Valletta is ornamented [p.18] in several places by large monuments and testimonial columns, raised as tributes of public or private administration, in memory of persons, some of whose names would not otherwise be remembered. However these erections, especially the Ponsonby column, and that on Corradino Hill, give pleasing variety and relief to the outlines of some localities.’ [91] Almost all the monuments in the Upper Baracca, the Floriana cemeteries, and Hastings Gardens have a distinct. neo-classic flavour, with ornamental elements such as urns, pyramids, fluted columns, reclining figures, and square classic pillars. Another important building of the period is the Royal Naval Hospital at Bighi, designed by Colonel Whitmore in 1830, [92] and bears the legend ‘Gaetano Xerri, Architect,’ proudly on its foundation stone. [93] It is the largest Doric building in Malta, the most important of the early British period and a constant reminder of the new British culture.

            It is not of course possible in an article of this length to dwell in more detail on all aspects of this interesting period of Maltese art and architecture. It can, however, be safely said that the satisfactory state of the arts in our country at the time was due in no small measure to the presence of Maltese artists at the Accademia di San Luca.

            The first connections of Malta with the Accademia di San Luca can be traced as far back as 1662, when the celebrated Maltese sculptor Melchiorre Gafa’ was unaminously created, when only 24 years old, to the highest honour which could be awarded by the Accademia. [94] Next, we meet Fortunato Carapecchia, an Italian architect of some note, whose collection of architectural drawings is still preserved at the Accademia. He was the father of the more famous Romano Carapecchia, who in 1706 came to Malta, became a Knight of the Order, and its chief architect and Fontaniere, or water supply engineer. [95]

            The Sigr. Cavaliere Gio. Francesco Bonamici, was made Accademico di San Luca by acclamation in 1758, [96] and later came to Malta and was responsible for the reconstruction of the Ġesù Church and of St Nicholas, both [p.19] in Merchants Street, Valletta. [97] Then follow in chronological order Pietro Paolo Troisi, sculptor, in 1705; [98] Giuseppe Casha, 1762; [99] Giuseppe Grech between 1780 and 1783; [100] Michele Busuttil 1782-83; [101] Benedetto Ittar, 1795; [102] Giorgio Pullicino, 1797-1800; [103] Massimo Gauci, 1798; [104] Salvatore Busuttil, Michele’s son, 1818; [105] Lazzaro Pisani, 1872; [106] and Carlo Ignazio Cords, 1873. [107] All these artists won the much coveted prizes which consisted of silver medals of three different sizes, with the image of the reigning Pontiff on the obverse, and the Hall of the Academy on the reverse, with the inscription Schola Pictorvm Capitolina. [108]

            Special mention should be made of Salvatore Busuttil. During the forty years he lived in Rome, where he died in 1854, he drew literally thousands of drawings, ranging from the size of a large postage stamp to a quarto size sheet, all neatly glued on thick paper and handsomely bound in volumes. There are no less than eleven of these volumes, containing more than 7,000 drawings, classified under rare Mss at the Accademia di San Luca. The subjects covered are ornamental drawings, mythological subjects, classical statues, studies of the human figure, old Greek, Egyptian and Christian costumes, arms and armour, landscapes, including some Malta scenes, Roman and Maltese costumes, and others depicting daily life in Rome and in the Lazio province. [109]



[1] Hugh Honour, Neo-Classicism, in The Age of Neo-Classicism, XIVth Exhibition of the Council of Europe, Arts Council of Great Britain, London, 1972, p. xxi.

[2]   Hugh Honour, Neo-Classicism, Penguin Books, London, 1968, p. 18.

[3]   Hugh Honour, Neo-Classicism, in The Age of Neo-Classicism, XIVth Exhibition of the Council of Europe, p. xxii.

[4]   Wend von Kalnein, Architecture in the Age of Nev-Classicism, in XIVth Exhibition of the Council of Europe, p. liv.

[5]   ibid., p. liii.

[6]   ibid., p. lviii.

[7]   Olivier Michel, in Disegni del XIX e XX secolo, Catalogo, Galleria Carlo Virgilio, Roma, 1981. p. 12: ‘The Guidon de Hittar, Counts of Balneo, natives of Toscano, established themselves in Poland at the beginning of the 16th century because of economical and financial difficulties. Stefano was born in Owruckz, in Poland, in 1724, but went to Italy towards the middle of the 18th century where he was much influenced by the late followers of Borromini. He travelled throughout Spain, before settling in Catania in 1765, where he married Rosalia Battaglia, daughter of the renowned architect Francesco, with whom Ittar had collaborated for a long number of years. Called to Malta in 1784 to construct the Public Library, he died here in 1790. Stefano had three sons, all artists: a designer, and two architects. Enrico, born in Catania in 1773, went to study in Rome, where he frequented the French Academy. He later proceeded to Poland in 1790, and became one of the foremost exponents of the neoclassic there. Benedetto and Sebastiano, twin brothers, were born in 1778, also in Catania. Benedetto studied at the Accademia di San Luca between 1795 and 1797, and was awarded a first and a second prize in two consecutive sessions. Sebastiano became a painter of considerable distinction; he died in Catania in 1847.’
For the Ittars, see also, Quentin J. Hughes, The Building of Malta, London, 1956, pp. 215-216; Nicolò Pisani, Barocco in Sicilia, Siracusa, 1958, p. 21 and foot-note; Edward Sammut, infra., pp.

[8]   A similar step was taken by the British by Proclamation No. VI of 1814, issued by Governor Sir Thomas Maitland. This, however, differed considerably from that of Napoleon in that the Arms of the Order (the few that remained), were to be removed, and not defaced: ‘......His Excellency therefore directs that all the Armorial Bearings, and other Emblems of the Sovereignty of every kind, wherever they may be found, be removed; but with that degree of observance and decency due to an Order of great antiquity and much well-deserved celebrity, and that in their places His Majesty’s Arms be substituted, as soon as they can be prepared.’ (Gazzetta del Governo di Malta, No. 16 of 9 February, 1814, p. 61).
On June 24th, 1815, Maitland wrote to the Commandant, Royal Engineers, Malta, requesting him to proceed with the installation of the British Coat-of-Arms at Porta Reale and Porta Marina, “now, that those on the Main Guard and The Palace have already been changed.” [P]ublic [R]ecord [O]ffice, London, WO 44/69.
Some of the best coats-of-arms of the Order were, in fact, carefully taken down and set aside. They were later ‘collected by His Excellency Sir Arthur Fremantle, and for their better preservation were set up in the walls of this Palace in 1897,’ as may be seen from a marble slab in one of the corridors of Neptune’s Courtyard, Palace of The President, Valletta.

[9]   [N]ational [L]ibrary of [M]alta, Arch. 1190, f. 157.

[10] N.L.M., Library Ms. 6524a, Régistre des ordonnances arretées pour les payemens a faire par son Trésorier..., ff. 26, 28, 34; and Mss. 6523b and 6523c, Régistres des Délibérations de la Commission du Gouvernment, various entries.

[11] N.L.M., Library Ms 6523, Régistre des Délibérations de la Commission de Gouvernement des Isles de Malte et du Gozo, f. 132.

[12] N.L.M., Lib, Ms, 6523c, Seance du 7 Fructidor, an 6 (24 August 1798), N.L.M. Lib. Ms. 463(3).

[13] Almanacco di Malta e Gozo, Malta Government Press, Malta, 1806, p. 18.

[14] (P)alace (A)rchives (V)alletta, Register of Petition Books, 18 November, 1815.

[15] Michael Ellul, Heritage of an Island - Malta, Malta, 1975, pp. 74-75.

[16] Andrew P. Vella, The University of Malta, Malta, 1969, p. 72.

[17] Rapporto del Comitato Speciale sull'Uffizio dei Lavori Pubblici, Malta, 1850, p. v.

[18] ibid., p. v.

[19] ibid., Minute delle Testimonianze date innanzi al Comitato p. 6.

[20] ibid., p. vi.

[21] Andrew P. Vella, op. cit., p. 63.

[22] P.A.V., Ms. Malta Miscellaneous Papers, Vol. II: Relazione dello Stato delle Scuole di Disegno nell'Università di Malta, dal 1802 al'1850, no pagination.

[23] ibid.

[24] ibid.

[25] N.L.M. Lib., Misc. 463(3), Almanacco di Malta e Gozo, Government Press, Malta, 1806, p. 25; Malta Blue Book for 1821, p. 134.

[26] [A]ccademia di [S]an [L]uca, Rome, Typescript, Concorsi Clementini di Pittura. 1702-1869.

[27] A.S.L. Rome, Ms. 3381, Nome e cognome di tutti i premiati alla scuola del nudo dall'anno 1754 al 1848, f. 26v.

[28] P.P. Castagna, Li Storia ta Malta, Malta, 1869, Part 3, p. 117; Vincenzo Bonello, The Madonna in Art, Malta, 1949, p. 77.

[29] Malta Blue Book for the Year 1821, p. 134: Giorgio Pullicino appointed by King’s Civil Commissioner on 5 November 1803.

[30] (S)t (P)aul (S)hipwreck, Valletta, Parish Records, Liber Bap., Lib. XII, f. 134.

[31] [U]niversity of [M]alta [L]ibrary, Notizia Biografico-Necrologica di Giorgio Pullicino – Pittore Architetto, Malta, 1852, L'Arte, Anno II, No. 46, Ottobre, 1864 p. 2.

[32] UML, Notizia....., op. cit., L'Arte, op. cit., p. 3.

[33] Carlo Pietrangeli, L'Accademia del Nudo in Campidoglio, in Strenna dei Romanisti, No. XX, Roma, 1959, pp. 123-128.

[34] ibid.

[35] ibid.

[36] A.S.L., Roma, Ms 33BL, Nome e Cognome di ...... f. 36r. This drawing, in pencil and chalk, is still preserved at the Accademia, No.B.519.

[37] E. Bénézit, Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Déssinateurs et Graveurs, St. Ouen, France, 1956, vol. 8, p. 206.

[38] A.S.L., Roma, op. cit., f. 38r., Drawing No. B.534.

[39] Bénézit, E., op. cit., vol. I, p. 193.

[40] A.S.L., Roma, op. cit., f. 38r, Drawing No. B.540.

[41] A.S.L., Roma, op. cit., f. 39v, Drawing No. B.549.

[42] U.M.L., Notizia...... op. cit.; L'Arte, op. cit., p. 5.

[43] R. Bonnici Calì, Maecenas of Fine Arts, in Scientia, Vol. XIV, No. 1. Malta, 1948, p. 35.

[44] U.M.L., Notizia...... op. cit, L'Arte, op. cit., p. 5.

[45] [A]rchives [C]athedral [M]useum: Diario Ms delle Compere del Conte Saverio Marchese.

[46] S.P.S., Valletta, Parish Records, Reg. Matr., Vol. XII, ff. 164-65.

[47] Giuseppe Perriciuoli Borzesi, Historical Guide to the Island of Malta and its Dependencies, Government Press, Malta, 1830, p. 30.

[48] S.P.S., Valletta, Parish Records, Status Animarum 1816, f. 9; 1822-25.

[49] Paul Cassar, Medical History of Malta, London, 1964, pp. 336-37.

[50] U.M.L., Notizia......, op. cit., L'Arte, op. cit., p. 4.

[51] ibid., Bonnici Calì, op. cit., p. 35.

[52] U.M.L., Notizia......, L'Arte, op. cit. p. 5.

[53] ibid.

[54] P.A.V. Register of Petitions (1825-34), Department of Government Works and Repairs, No. 240, 13 March 1830, p. 137.

54a Malta Government Gazette, April 7, 1830, p. 103.

[55] P.R.O., London WO158/50.

[56] U.M.L., Notizia...... op. cit., L'Arte, op. cit. p. 4., Ms in private collection, Valletta.

[57] Malta Government Gazette, June 22, 1831:       “....... On the 14th instant the monument erected to the memory of the late Sir Robert Cavendish Spencer......... was completed......... As a substantial and finished piece of masonry it is highly creditable to the architect, Mr George Pullicino, Professor of Drawing and Architecture at the University of Literature.........”

[58] Il Portafoglio Maltese, March 30, 1893; Gazzetta di Malta, March 28, 1893.

[59] Encyclopaedia Britannica.

[60] Temi Zammit, Valletta: A Historical Sketch, Malta, 1929, pp. 81-83.

[61] Donald H. Simpson, Some Public Monuments of Valletta, 1800-1955, in Melita Historica, Vol. 2., No. 2, 1957, p. 77.

[62] Giovanni Faure’, Li Storia ta Malta u Ghaudex bil gzejjer taghhom, Malta, 1916, Vol. IV, Cap. III, Sez I, p. 158.

[63] P.R.O., London WO2744/(2), Monthly Returns of the Royal Engineers in Malta, 1-29 February, 1812.

[64] Almanacco........., op. cit., p. 18.

[65] Giovanni Faure’, op. cit., p. 158, L'Arte, Vol. I, n.8, March 7, 1863, p. 3.

[66] N.L.M., Lib. Misc. 523 (II), Per l'innalzamento di un Mausoleo in nome del fù Cav. A.G. Ball; William Hardman, A History of Malta......... 1798-1815, London, 1909, p. 508.

[67] ibid.

[68] R. Bonnnici Calì, op. cit., p. 35.

[69] P.R.O., London, WO55/908.

[70] At the time of the submission to the War Office of this plan, Michele Cachia, Matteo Bonavia, his son Calcedonio, and others, were in the employment of the Royal Engineers as ‘Ingegneri,’ Capo Maestri, Draughtsmen and Assistant Draughtsmen.

[71] P.R.O. London, WO55/10.

[72] Celia Congreve, in Houses and Gardens of the Mediterranean – The Villa Frère, Malta, in Country Life Magazine, July 5, 1930, pp. 12-18.

[73] A.M. Broadly, The History of Freemasonry in the District of Malta from 1800 to the present time, London, 1880.

[74] Carmelo Mifsud Bonnici, John Hooham Frère in Daily Malta Chronicle, January 22, 1936.

[75] Andrew P. Vella, op. cit., p. 67.

[76] ibid., p. 66.

[77] A.C.M., Fondo Panzavecchia, Vol. 84, f. 183. Panzavecchia describes the gate as ‘una magnifica ed elegante porta.’

[78] Hugh Honour, Neo-Classicism, Penguin Books, London, 1968, pp. 40-42.

[79] Almanacco, op. cit., p. 18.

[80] P.P. Castagna, op. cit., p. 106; Oliver Friggieri, L-iskultur Vincenzo Dimech u l-Istatwa ta'San Publiju in Le'ħ'en is-Sewwa, April 28, 1979; G. Faure, op. cit., Vol. IV, Sez. VI, p. 118; L'Arte, Vol. I, n.8, p. 3.

[81] For Obituary of Nicola Zammit see Malta Government Gazette, No. 916, September 9, 1823.

[82] Malta Government Gazette, November 5 and November 11, 1823; N.L.M., Libr. Ms. 386, f. 135.

[83] Jordan Dimacopoulos, Whitmore of Corfù, in The Architectural Review, December 1979; Stelio Hourmouzios, An English Palace in Corfù in Country Life Magazine, April 26, 1962, p. 959; Nigel Nicolson, The Royal Palace of Corfù in Great Palaces, London, 1964, pp. 274-81.

[84] Jordan Dimacopolus, Neo-Classical Preludes in Greece, Thesis presented to The School of Architecture, York University 1975, p. 74.

[85] Malta Government Gazette, May 2, 1838, No.1430, pp. 170-71.

[86] ibid.

[87] Malta Government Gazette, February 6, 1839, No. 1839, u.46.

[88] Malta Government Gazette, November 7, 1838, No.1457.

[89] Malta Mail, October 27, 1843.

[90] Thomas MacGill, A Handbook or Guide for Strangers Visiting Malta, Malta, 1839, p. 47.

[91] William Tallack, Malta under the Phoenicians, Knights and English, London, 1861, pp. 63-64.

[92] Rapporto......... sul Dipartimento dei Lavori Pubblici, op. cit., p. 6.

[93] Malta Government Gazette, March 24, 1830.

[94]   A.S.L., Rome, Liber Accademia Sa Luca, 1631-74, f. 134., Archivio Rubricella, Vol. 43, f. 134.

[95]   Paolo Marconi, La Collezione dei Disegni – Disegni - Architettonici, in Origini e Vicende dell'Accademia di San Luca, ed. Pietrangeli, Carlo, Roma, 1974, p. 281. See also Paolo Marconi, Angela Cipriani; and Enrico Valeriani: I Disegni di Architettura dell'Archivio Storico dell'Accademia di San Luca, Roma, 1974, p. 4.

[96]   A.S.L., Rome, Archivio Rubricella, Vol. 51, ff. 112-114., Libro de'Decreti delle Congregazioni Accademiche dalli 28 nocvembre 1751 a tutto dicembre 1759, f. 112r.

[97]   For divergencies regarding Christian names of Bonamici, see J. Quentin Hughes, op. cit., p. 202.

[98] Luigi Pirotta, Contributo alla Storia dell'Accademia azionale di San Luca: Alunni Stranieri delle Scuole Accademiche premiati nei vari corsi, in Urbe, No. 2, 1962, pp. 14-20.

[99]   ibid., A.S.L. Rome, Ms. 33BL, op. cit., ff. 7v, 9v, 92.

[100] ibid., A.S.L. Rome, Typescript: Schedario dei premiati; Drawings at Accademia Nos. A523, B318, B326, B330, B340; Ms. op. cit., ff. 25r, 25v, 26v.

[101] ibid., Schedario, etc., Drawings Nos. 534A, 341B., Ms. op. cit. f. 26r.

[102] ibid., Drawing No. 497B; one other drawing mentioned in the Schedario is missing from the Accademia Drawings’ Collection. It is interesting to note that Ittar is alternatively described as Maltese and Catanese.

[103] ibid., Schedario, etc., Drawings No.s 519B, 534B, 540B, 549B; Ms. op. cit., ff. 36r, 38r, 39v.

[104] ibid., Schedario, etc., Drawing No. 5211; Ms. op. cit., f. 37r. A painting, after a lithography by Gauci, of Capt. Spencer, to whom a monument was erected by Giorgio Pullicino, supra, is preserved at The National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

[105] ibid., Schedario, etc., Drawing No. 706B; Ms. op. cit., f. 53r.

[106] ibid., A.S.L. Rome, Catalogo dei Disegni della Scuola del Nudo (1754-1872), Typescript, entries for March and June 1872.

[107] ibid., A.S.L. Rome, Concorso Pellegrini, 1863.

[108] Carlo Pietrangeli, L'Accademia del Nudo in Campidoglio, op. cit., p. 128.

[109] A.S.L., Roma, Raccolta Busuttil, Mss. (Rari), 11 volumes; Luigi Cállari, Un pittore di Vita Romana, in Estratto della Rassegna Contemporanea, Anno III, n.5, Roma, 1910.