Copyright © The Malta Historical Society, 2011.

Source: Proceedings of History Week 2009. (37-46). [Malta : The Malta Historical Society, 2011].

[p.37]

Count Saverio Marchese A Conoscente with Special Reference to His Commentary on Uomini Illustri di Malta

Krystle Farrugia[*]

Count Saverio Marchese (1757-1833) enjoyed great respect as a connoisseur and a cognizant. His expertise extended over a number of fields, among them poetry[1], history, archaeology, the Maltese language[2] and especially the arts and local art history. He amassed a substantial collection of paintings, drawings and prints, many of which he left to the Mdina Cathedral Museum.[3]

Among Marchese’s contributions to the study of local art history is a copy of an eighteenth century text to which he adds his own annotations. This was compiled in 1825.[4] The manuscript, MS 1123, in the National Library Collection (Plate 1), is a copy of Uomini Illustri di Malta, by an anonymous Capuchin Friar who is usually identified with Dott. Bartolomeo Mifsud (1707-1781), better known as Padre Pelagio.[5] The text is a compendium of brief biographies of Maltese and foreign painters, sculptors and architects who worked in Malta (Plate 2). It was written between 1762 and 1771.[6] If the author is indeed Padre Pelagio Mifsud, it is strange that he remains anonymous

[p.38]

Fig. 1. NLM, Libr, Ms. 1123, Uomini Illustri di Malta, National LIbrary of Malta, Valletta.

Fig. 2. ‘Notizie: Di alcuni Pittori, Scultori, Architetti, e Capi Maestri si Maltesi, che Forastieri, che operarono in Malta, o che in essa spedirono le loro Opere, adunate da un Padre del Serafico Ordine Capuccino della Custodia di Malta, Amatore e Curioso Investigatore delle Cose Patrie.’
NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, Uomini Illustri di Malta, f.1.

[p.39]

Fig. 3. ‘dal Conte Saverio Marchese Trascrittore, correttore, illustratore e contributore di de. Notizie.’ NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, Uomini Illustri di Malta, f.1.

since the friar was a close acquaintance of the Marchese family. It is possible that Marchese was respecting Pelagio’s wish to remain unknown. Marchese describes himself as ‘...trascrittore, correttore, illustratore e contributore di de. Notizie[7] (Plate 3). He comments on the text and adds relevant notes giving new information available since the death of the friar. Marchese vouches his opinions about specific works or the merits of an artist showing that he was a bold and informed critic and providing an insight into his artistic tastes and distastes.

Marchese was very up to date on available art historical information. In the Uomini Illustri he expands on the entry on Antonello Ricci da Messina with recent discoveries in Messina dating to 1821 which shed light on the artist’s life and training.[8] In the extract Belle Arti preserved at the Cathedral Museum Archives in Mdina, Marchese cites a number of sources to enrich his entries describing his numerous visits to churches around Malta. He quotes Pellegrino Antonio Orlandi’s Abecedario Pittorico (1704) to provide information on Melchiorre Gafà and Giovanni Baglione’s Le Vite de’ Pittori, scultori, architetti, ed Intagliatori (1642) to supplement his discussion on Matteo Perez de Leccio’s painting of ‘St Catherine’ in Zurrieq.[9] Marchese quotes Giovanni Antonio Ciantar’s Malta Illustrata (1772) on a number of occasions, one of these being when describing the titular painting of the Carmelite Church in Valletta which Ciantar attributes to Leggiadro Pinnello, with which Marchese disagrees.[10] Marchese bought Onorato Brest’s seminal publication Malta Antica Illustrata (1816) just two months after the author passed away.[11] He also transcribes part of Luigi Lanzi’s Storia Pittorica dell’Italia (1809) to attribute two [p.40] majolica plates in his collection.[12] Marchese acquired two seminal publications on the history and identification of engravings; Manuel des curieux et des amateurs de l’art (1797-1804) by Michel Huber and Le Peintre-Graveur (1803-1821) by Adam Bartsch which he found valuable when putting together his collection of prints.[13] Count Saverio Marchese’s most important contributions to the Uomini Illustri di Malta are his comments on the original text concerned with vanished or destroyed works of art, on which he gives information of seminal importance. Among these he mentions the ceiling of the Carmelite Church in Valletta by Raimondo de Dominicis which at the beginning of the nineteenth century was whitewashed leaving only the coat of arms of the Carmelite Order at the centre held by two angels.[14]

Marchese’s corrections attest to his expertise on art history. He explains that the altarpiece of the ‘Flight into Egypt’ originally in the Church of Porto Salvo, Valletta, was not by Filippino Dingli, as the Capuchin Friar claims, but was one of the best paintings on the island and was by Alessandro Turchi, although he is more inclined to believe that its authorship belongs to Domenichino;

Erra di molto il P. anno. Capucco. nell’osservare, che nella Chiesa di Porto Salvo della Valletta il quadro della fuga d’Egitto fosse della mano del do. Filippo Dingli. Egli era uno de migliori quadri, che esistesse in Malta; e si crede di mano del Turchetto, o gia Alesso. Turchi Veronese, o piu incontrastabilme. di mano del Gran Domenichino, o più Domeno. Zampieri, Bolognese...[15]

Another significant mistake made by the friar which Marchese corrects is the attribution of the sculpture group of the ‘Ecstasy of St Theresa’ at the Cornaro Chapel in the Church of Santa Maria della Vittoria in Rome, to Suor Maria De Dominicis when it is one of the best and most famous works by Gian Lorenzo Bernini.[16] The Capuchin author makes a confusing entry which Marchese tries to clarify when he attributes the titular of ‘The Martyrdom of St Catherine’ in the Parish Church of Zejtun to a Monsieur Fei or Fè, when he had previously, on two accounts, written that this same painting was a copy by Stefano Erardi of an original by Mattia Preti.[17]

An important insight into Marchese’s artistic tastes is the dislike he openly expresses for certain mediocre works. He describes the ceiling of the Church of St Mary of Jesus (tà Ġieżu) in Valletta by Giuseppe Scarlatti as ‘...abominevole in genere [p.41] d’arte, e che per rendere la sud. Chiesa più bella dovrebbe esser del tutto ricoperta da una sola tinta.[18] Similarly, he writes that the destroyed ceiling of Porto Salvo Church in Valletta by Baldassare Bambaci, ‘…era eseguito abbominevolmente…[19]

It is interesting to note that Count Saverio Marchese refers more than once with distaste to the works and restoration interventions by Antonacio Grech, known as Naici or Tonaci.[20] Antonacio Grech (1758- 1819) was the brother of the more well-known painter Giuseppe Grech. Recorded mainly as a decorator in distemper, Antonacio was not a significant artist.[21] Marchese describes him as ‘…ignorantissimo in genere di pittura ad olio…,’ when he refers to the disastrous overpaintings and alterations he had carried out on the titular painting of the Church of Porto Salvo in Valletta which he wrongly attributes to Filippo Paladini.

‘…volle ridipinger quasi quel quadro rappresentante la Vergine Santissa. sulle nuvole contornata d’angeli avendo a sinistra o più del quadro S. Tommaso, a destra S. Domenico, e nella meta un Cavaliere vestito d’armi bianche a terra sopra un ginocchio ad implorarla. Egli dopo aver cancellato detto Cavaliere, per dipinger nel fondo del quadro la Punta del Dragutto, o forte Tignè, ritoccò tutta l’aria che era prima armonica col tutto, e la rese tanto rossa, ed oscura che in oggi la med.e con tutto il quadro fà orrore.’ [22]

Marchese also expresses resentment for the barbarous alterations done by Grech to a painting by Preti representing St Rose of Lima, now in the Oratory of the Archconfraternity of Our Lady of the Rosary of the same church of Porto Salvo, which was barbarously cut up to fit into the new altar.[23] Marchese refers again to Antonacio Grech to discuss the decorations of the Manoel Theatre by Antonio Pippi which Grech was entrusted to repaint. Grech ruined the decorations in the theatre completely and he demanded an unreasonably high fee. Consequently he was never again awarded a commission by the Government.[24]

Marchese attributes the decorations in the ceiling paintings of the piano nobile corridors of the Grand Master’s Palace in Valletta to the same Antonio Pippi;

Non dubito poi, che dà quest’ Antonio Pippi sieno stati dipinti tutti i Corridori delle loggie del Palazzo gia’ Magistrale della Valletta, poichѐ oltre d’esser maestrevole. coloriti, e bizzarramente inventati, furono questi fatti in tempo del de. G. Mro. Vilhena [.....] e sono dello stesso colorito, maniera e stile dell’ antico dipinto di do. Teatro.[25]

[p.42] It is a mystery why Marchese attributes these paintings to Pippi since they are the work of the celebrated quadraturista Niccolò Nasoni (1691-1773). Nasoni was very much commended by the Order of St John and although few works in Malta can be securely tied to him through documentation, a number of others can be stylistically attributed. The Capuchin friar was a contemporary of Nasoni but fails to mention him in his manuscript and it seems that by Marchese’s time Nasoni had been largely forgotten.[26]

An interesting insight into Marchese’s tastes in architecture is revealed when he describes the new church of Porto Salvo by Antonio Cachia ‘…che con pessimo disegno, ed enormità inutile di massi fabricò de. nuova chiesa…’[27] Cachia’s church has a dynamic Baroque design which was retardataire for its time but was loved by the clergy and the people. Giorgio Pullicino (1779-1851) had also submitted a design for this church which teemed with neo-classical hints.[28] It seems likely that Marchese was more in favour of Pullicino’s design. Marchese knew the artist personally as he was a member of a Committee of the University where Pullicino was a Professor of Drawing.[29] Marchese also bought a number of paintings from Pullicino who was an occassional art dealer.

A possible connection can here be made to Pullicino’s similarly rejected design for the new Parish Church at Mosta. Giorgio Grognet de Vasse’s monumental neo-classical rotunda, based on the Pantheon in Rome was preferred. Bishop Francesco Saverio Caruana, former Rector of the University, was so indignant that the plan of his protégé Pullicino was overlooked, and that the pagan Pantheon was chosen as a model instead of a traditional Latin-cross plan, that he was not present at the laying down of the foundation stone of the church. One is tempted to assume that Marchese, as a friend of Bishop Caruana, to whom he also dedicated a sonnet, and also a friend of Pullicino, was a supporter of the latter’s invention. Moreover, Grognet was Marchese’s nephew but he was a disgraced member of the family. Grognet disregarded his father’s wishes for him to enter in the service of the Church and instead chose to join Napoleon’s forces in Italy. Grognet was the only nephew that Marchese did not mention in his will, however, the Count did own two ‘Astronomical Designs’ by Grognet.[30] One can never be sure of Marchese’s reactions towards Grognet’s invention for the Mosta Dome, as he died a few months after construction began.

Giorgio Pullicino was only one of the artists with whom Marchese was acquainted. From his writings, it is clear that he had a special admiration for Antoine Favray (1706-1798). Giuseppe Isidoro Marchese, the count’s father, was probably

[p.43]

Fig. 4. Count Saverio Marchese, Napoleon on his Deathbed, 1825, Dr Albert Ganado Collection.

responsible for encouraging Favray to establish himself in Malta and he remained a loyal friend and patron during his stay on the island.[31] Count Saverio Marchese adds that he himself had become a good friend and companion to Favray in his old age.

In the entry in the Uomini Illustri di Malta on Favray, Marchese writes that the anonymous friar omits from the life of the painter his second visit to Malta after his return from Constantinople, probably because the author was already dead at the time. He makes a commitment to write in the manuscript a biography of the artist with a full catalogue of works of art once he finished transcribing the original text. This, however, never materialized. His ties to Favray certainly influenced his artistic tastes and he owned a number of works by the French artist, including works executed by Favray during his stay in the orient (Plate 4).[32] This suggests that he shared the [p.44] interest in the East which was widespread throughout Europe at the time. Artists, connoisseurs and noblemen travelled to the east in search of the new and unusual; a sign of an increasingly Romantic attitude.

In his annotations to the entry on Favray’s contemporary Francesco Zahra Marchese provides important information on the choir pendants at Zebbug Parish Church. He ascribes their invention to Favray and claims that Zahra was only responsible for their execution. Zahra is described as Favray’s most loved and gifted pupil.[33] Marchese confirms that Zahra ‘…mai studiò fuori dalla sua Patria’.[34]

Marchese was also a close friend of other contemporary painters. When, in his annotations, he discusses certain works in his collection he associates a painter identified by the original author only as Ignazio with Francesco Ignazio Borgognone better known as Ignazio Bavarese. Marchese tells us that he owns three works which the Roman painter and his very close friend Filippo Benucci had assured him were originals by Bavarese and that he had been encouraged to buy these works by the painter Charles Allingham.[35] His close relationship with Benucci is also attested by the numerous purchases of Old Masters works he made from the artist to enrich his collection.[36]

Marchese’s collection features few paintings by Maltese artists. He inherited works by Stefano Erardi, Giuseppe d’Arena and Francesco Zahra, as well as a number of paintings by Antoine Favray.[37] The only personal commissions recorded in the register Primo Costo are two views of the Grand Harbour from Anton Schranz who had just settled on the island. Marchese also bought a ‘Country Villa in Rome’ by Giuseppe Grech which he had restored by Giuseppe Schranz, who also inserted a number of figures in the foreground.[38] We have an indication that Marchese did not particularly treasure a painting of the ‘Nativity’ by Michele Busuttil which he bought for its exquisite frame while he gave the painting to a ‘muratore’ as a gift.[39]

[p.45] From this short list of paintings it seems that Marchese was not really an avid patron of contemporary Maltese artists. However, from his collection of prints it emerges that he supported the Purist circle of local artists who had studied under Tommaso Minardi at the Accademia di San Luca in Rome. He bought eight lithographs by Tommaso Madiona depicting heads of figures after Raphael’s ‘Deposition’.[40] Marchese also bought two series of prints of Roman Costumes which Salvatore Busuttil had executed in Rome (Plate 5).[41] He also owned a ‘Virgin and Child’ invented and engraved by Pietro Paolo Caruana in 1822 during his sojourn in Rome.[42] Therefore, Marchese followed closely the careers of the up and coming artists of Purist orientation who would go on to execute numerous altarpieces to adorn Maltese churches.

An observation worth noting is Marchese’s adaptation to the changes in government. Under the Order of St John, he occupied positions of high repute in society. His gratitude is expressed in his sonnets, one of which is dedicated to Grand Master de Rohan who made Marchese Count of Maimon in 1793.[43] Marchese’s opinions on the French Government were somewhat unsympathetic. During the two-year siege in Valletta, Marchese did not make any purchases and he kept himself out of the public and political eye. In a random collection of transcriptions and notes, Marchese recorded incidences that made Napoleon look bad. He also writes a sonnet to commemorate the liberation of the Pope and Napoleon’s fall.[44] A curious and unique drawing by Marchese records Napoleon in his deathbed (Plate 6).[45] It is signed by the count and dated 1825. Marchese was probably inspired from numerous prints that were in circulation after the Emperor’s death which were presumably also popular among the British circle in Malta.

Marchese adapted effortlessly into the British environment under the new government. In 1823, he was elected to the University Committee responsible for examining the University’s performance and progress. In his collection of poems, there are a number of sonnets praising British Governors, among them Hastings and Ponsonby.[46] Marchese was also favourable of British preferences in art and architecture. He describes with approval Governor Maitland’s alterations to the Grand Council Chamber of the Grand Master’s Palace, ‘…le decorò magnifice. con colonne, e soffitto maestrevolme. dipinto.[47] We gather [p.46] that Marchese was able to feel at home easily under each government. His talents and social merits were appreciated by both the Grand Masters and the British Governors, who elected him to high social positions and invited him personally to important events and celebrations at the Palace on numerous occasions.

Marchese was a progressive figure whose ideas and actions reflected the contemporary European outlook. Art collecting became increasingly widespread among the European nobility. Marchese was one of the earliest collectors to leave his acquisitions to a public institution, the Mdina Cathedral Church, with the intention of these going to the establishment of a public museum.[48] Throughout Europe in the early nineteenth century several museums were established, the most outstanding being the Louvre in Paris in which Napoleon’s artistic loot were very well organized. Museums were considered both‘…culturally enriching and morally uplifting.’[49] It is significant that by donating his collection Marchese was encouraging this awareness of the necessity to instruct the public on local art and history.

Count Saverio Marchese’s writings, especially his annotations to the Uomini Illustri di Malta, provide a valuable insight into his artistic tastes; his preferences and dislikes. They also show that he was very well-read and aware of recent findings and events of art historical relevance. Marchese also shows that he and his family had very strong connections with well established artists, academics, connoisseurs, collectors and dealers both in Malta and abroad. Consequently, obtaining a more in depth idea of his artistic inclinations, through the study of this significant manuscript, and other writings by Marchese, can lead to a better understanding of the artistic scene and criticism of his day.


[*] KRYSTLE FARRUGUA is an MA candidate in the Department of History of Art, University of Malta, and is focussing on the artistic thought and theory of nineteenth-century Malta.

[1] A volume of his poems and writings is preserved at the Mdina Cathedral Museum Archives. ACM, Misc 445 A, B, C Poezie e Iscrizioni.

[2] His interest in the Maltese language is revealed in his unfinished dictionary entitled Principio di Vocabolario Italiano-Maltese per necessario Supplemento al Vocabolario Maltese-Italiano del Ch. Michele Antonio Vassallo sive Vassalli stampato a Roma nel 1796. Incominciato nel Blocco della Valletta del 1798 al 1800 [dal] Conte Saverio Marchese per ajuto di chi vuol dall’Italiano conoscere le parole Maltesi e da Lui non finite. NLM, Ms. 662.

[3] J. Azzopardi, ‘Count Saverio Marchese (1757-1833): His Picture- Gallery and his Bequest to the Cathedral Museum’, Proceedings of History Week 1982, M. Buhagiar (ed.), Malta 1982, 29-30. For an evaluation of the prints in Marchese’s collection see K. Franzeri, Saverio Marchesi (1757- 1833), erudita e collezionista maltese, unpublished dissertation, Università degli Studi di Catania 1992-93.

[4]Li 11 Feb 1825. Furono terminate da ricopiarsi, e correggiersi le sud. memorie nel sud. giorno dal Conte Saverio Marchese commentatore delle medesime nel suo ritiro in casa, cagionato da un gran raffreddore.’ NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, Uomini Illustri di Malta, f.93r.

[5] M. Buhagiar, ‘Niccolò Nasoni Between Malta and Portugal’, Treasures of Malta, XI, 3, 2005, 14. K. Sciberras, Baroque Painting in Malta, 2009, vii.

[6] The author mentions Favray’s departure for the East in 1762 but does not record his return to Malta in 1771, presumably providing a time period during which the text was written. M. Buhagiar, ‘Antonio Pippi - A forgotten Quadraturista’, Treasures of Malta, IX, 2, 2003, 25.

[7] NLM, Libr. Ms.1123, f.1.

[8] NLM, Libr. Ms.1123, ff.9r,10r.

[9] This painting, depicting the martyrdom of St Catherine, is recorded in the 1615 pastoral visit of Bishop Cagliares. G.F. Abela in his Della Descrittione di Malta (1647) attributes it to Matteo Perez d’Aleccio. The surviving painting thought to be the old altarpiece presents stylistic difficulties and does not fit the description of the report. M.Buhagiar (ed.) St Catherine of Alexandria: Her Churches, Paintings and Statues in the Maltese Islands, 1979, 116-117, 195. Presumably, d’Aleccio’s painting was still extant when Marchese visited the church.

[10] Notizie riguardanti l’Isola di Malta, e Gozo ricavate da diversi autori, che possono servire in avvenire per materia dell’Istoria di dette Isole - Belle Arti in ACM, Misc. 445D - Primo Costo: Spese della Raccolta di Stampe, quadri e disegni ed anche d’argenti, e d’ altri giocali fatte dal Conte Saverio Marchese fin dall’ anno 1791, ff. 16v, 17r, 23v.

[11] Marchese bought the book on January 12, 1819 while Brest died on November 12, 1818. ACM, Misc. 445D, f.55v.

[12] ACM, Misc. 445D, ff.40r, 53v.

[13] ACM, Misc. 445D, ff.56r, 57v, 61r.

[14] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.30v. This has been obliterated with the reconstruction of the church.

[15] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.13v. Marchese underlines similarities between the angel in this painting with a drawing by Domenichino in his collection. The painting is by Alessandro Turchi (1578-1648). Executed for the Church of Porto Salvo in 1635, it is now in the Manchester City Art Gallery. The painting had significant influence on Maltese artists and a copy of it by Stefano Erardi is extant in the Parish Church of St Lawrence, Birgu. K.Sciberras, L-Arti Barokka f’Malta, 2003, 28, 30. Sciberras 2009, 207.

[16] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.34v.

[17] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.68r.

[18] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.60v.

[19] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.63r.

[20] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, ff.8v, 45v, 66v.

[21] K. Sciberras, Rocco Buhagiar and Late Eighteenth Century Painting in Malta, M.A. History of Art, unpublished dissertation, University of Malta, 1995, 174. See also A.Ganado, ‘A prolific painter called Naici: Antonio Grech (1758-1819)’, The Sunday Times, August 20, 1995, 40.

[22] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.8v. This painting was replaced by the ‘Visitation’ by Pietro Paolo Caruana. It could be that the opinion of Marchese, and others regarding the distasteful alterations done to the titular painting propelled the request for a new commission. M.Busietta, Il-Knisja u l-Parrocca ta’ Stella Maris tas-Sliema, 1977, 44.

[23] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.45v.

[24] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f. 66v. Buhagiar 2003, 25-26.

[25] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.66v.

[26] Buhagiar 2005, 14. Proceedings of History Week - 2009

[27] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.45v.

[28] M.Ellul, ‘Art and Architecture in Malta in the Early Nineteenth Century’, Proceedings of History Week 1982, M.Buhagiar (ed.), Malta 1982, 11.

[29] Azzopardi 1982, 29.

[30] Franzeri 1992-3, 53-54. These are Drawings Nos. 374-5 at the Mdina Cathedral Archives.

[31] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.71r. Count Saverio Marchese writes that his father and Favray had been very close friends. The latter entrusted his will to the former before leaving for Constantinople. Favray is also known to have made portraits of members of the Marchese family, including one of Saverio in a Private Collection in Malta. S. Degiorgio, E. Fiorentino, Antoine Favray (1706-1798): A French Artist in Rome, Malta and Constantinople, 2004, 14, 154. Azzopardi 1982, 8.
Giuseppe Isidoro Marchese owned numerous paintings by Favray. His son Vincenzo records nine including a portrait of Giuseppe Isidoro, and two portraits of his wife Serafina. NLM, Libr. Ms. 658, Vita di Giuseppe Isidoro Marchese, scritta dal Dott. Vincenzo di lui Figlio 1791, ff.25v-26r. 32

[32] Among Favray’s works owned by Marchese now in the Cathedral Museum are a study for the altarpiece of ‘Our Lady of Ransom’, a ‘Portrait of Agostino Marchese,’ and a ‘Satyr at the Peasant’s Table.’ Paintings by Favray related to his stay in the orient are ‘Interior with Orientals’, ‘Turkish Ladies’ and ‘Greek Ladies.’ A. Espinosa Rodriguez, Paintings at the Cathedral Museum, Mdina, 2005, 282-3, 286-7, 292-3, 278-280, 284-5. Proceedings of History Week - 2009

[33] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, ff.70r-71r. E.F.Montanaro, ‘Materials for the life of Francesco Vincenzo Zahra (1710-1773)’ in Francesco Zahra (1710- 1773) (ed.) J.Azzopardi, 1986, 11.

[34] ACM, Misc. 445D, f.17r.

[35] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.60v. Charles Allingham (c.1778-1850) arrived in Malta around 1818 where he remained until he passed away in 1850. He was employed mostly as a portrait painter. G. Bonello, ‘Charles Allingham: A distinguished artist who settle in Malta’, The Sunday Times of Malta, August 14, 1994, 35-41, and ‘Charles Allingham: the ‘Maltese’ painter – a sequel’, The Sunday Times, August 13 1995, 44-46. In 1826, Marchese entrusted Allingham to act on his behalf to acquire engravings from Florence through Gio Batta Farrugia, a Maltese engraver who was heading to Milan to place himself under to tutorship of the famed engraver Giuseppe Longhi. ACM, Misc 445D, f. 66r.

[36] Azzopardi 1982, 39-43. Marchese bought a number of paintings and prints from Benucci, including works by Durer. Benucci (1779-1848) was in Malta between 1810 and 1825 when he moved to Munich where he still acted as a dealer for Marchese. He is remembered for the landscapes executed on his travels and was also one of the first Italians to practice lithography. In 1826, he produced a series of 12 lithographs depicting views of Malta which had been drawn from nature by Benucci and Antonio Schranz. These were published in Munich by J. Lacroix. Strangely enough, Benucci’s lithographs did not form part of Marchese’s collection. A.Ganado, ‘Through the Artists’s Eyes: Views of Malta and Gozo before 1900,’ 7th Malta International Book Fair, 26-29 October 1989, 1989, 60-61; and Azzopardi 1982, 34-35.

[37] Azzopardi 1982, 43.

[38] ACM, Misc 445D, f.56v.

[39] ACM, Misc 445D, f.48v.

[40] He bought these from Giannino Leizer who shares his surname with the Hyzler family. ACM, Misc. 445D, f. 79r.

[41] These he bought from ‘Mercantuccolo Busuttil’ described as his brother. ACM, Misc. 445D, f. 79r.

[42] ACM, Misc. 445D, f. 75r.

[43] Franzeri 1992-3, 45.

[44] Franzeri 1992-3, 59.

[45] The drawing forms part of the Albert Ganado Collection.

[46] In the sonnet for Ponsonby he describes the Governor as ‘Un Prode, un Padre a regger Malta…’ Marchese also writes another sonnet to King George IV to thank him for sending Governor Hastings to Malta. ACM, Misc 445A, ff.70v, 80r.

[47] NLM, Libr. Ms. 1123, f.5v.

[48] The collection was to go to the Cathedral once the male line of his family was extinguished. Azzopardi 1982, 32. For other contemporary Maltese collectors see R.Delia, Art Collecting in Malta (1600-c.1850), M.A. History of Art, unpublished dissertation, University of Malta, 2008, 159 and Franzeri 1992-3, 9-10.

[49] D. Irwin, Neoclassicism, London 2006, 340-41.