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His mother, named Bernardina Piazzola, belonged
to the Ormani or Aromani family, and brought her
husband a dowry of 100 lire.

These facts, which have been distinctly ascer-
tained, prove that Allegri could not have been
brought up in poverty, nor could he, as was at one
time supposed, have belonged to a noble family
of the name of De Allegris, who possessed a castle
and estates a short distance from Correggio. He
always, it would appear, lived an easy, comfort-
able bourgeois life, never, it is true, rising to the
grandeur and show of some of the other great
masters of the Renaissance, but on the other hand
never falling into that dire poverty of which
Vasari gives such a moving picture. Vasari's
narrative indeed, as regards Allegri, has long been
known to be more than usually inaccurate. He
possessed little real knowledge concerning the
distant Lombard master, though he professed a
great admiration for him as one " endowed with
exalted genius," whose works he praised for their
"attractive grace, charming manner, perfect
relief, and the exquisite softness of their flesh-
tints." Nor has modern research, while showing
the incorrectness of Vasari's statements, found
out much concerning the personal history of this
charming master, who, living far distant from
Rome and Florence, the great centres of art in the
16th century, remained unknown to most of his
renowned contemporaries, and thus probably missed
the important part that he might otherwise have
played in the art of his time.

The ascertained facts of his life, stripped of all
conjecture and tradition, may be told in a short
space. His father, Pellegrino, destined him, it is
said, for a learned profession, but this is not cer-
tain. At an early age, however, the young Allegri
showed an inclination towards painting, which
fact does not appear to have been disputed.
He had an uncle, named Lorenzo, an indifferent
painter of Correggio, from whom he probably ac-
quired the first rudiments of the art ; but after-
wards there is reason to believe that he studied
under a master named Antonio Bartolotti, or
Bartolozzi, called also Toguino degli Ancini, who
in 1500 was the chief master or Caposcuola in
Correggio. Bulbarini.in his Memorie Patrie, speaks
of this painter as having been " often assisted by
his pupil Allegri ; " but Dr. Meyer does not con-
sider that he gained anything from this master
' beyond a certain technical practice in tempera
painting." Unfortunately only two of Bartolotti's
works are known, and they prove that he had verj
little capacity.

Mengs is of opinion that Allegri studied in
Modena also, under two masters of some repute
Francesco Bianchi, called ' 11 Frare,' and Pelle-
grino Munari but there is no historical evidence
to support this view beyond a passage in Vedri-
ani's I'ittore Modenesi, which was added by the
publisher at a later date. Bianchi died in 1510
when Allegri was only sixteen, so it is not likely
that he derived much knowledge from him, even
if we admit that he studied in Modena, which

21



A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF



seems unnecessary, considering that an esteemed
master like Bartolotti was to be found nearer
home.

But whoever were his early teachers (and other
masters besides those named are mentioned), his
style seems to have been formed chiefly by the
study of Mantegna. It is supposed that he had an
opportunity for such study, for it is said he went to
Mantua in 1511, at a time when the plague was
raging at Correggio, and resided there for some
time. Mantegna himself was dead at this time,
but at the impressionable period of development
such a revelation us that of Mantegna's art could
scarcely fail to have a great influence over the
style of a youthful artist, and Allegri's study of
this master doubtless led to that intimate know-
ledge of foreshortening and perspective which he
exhibits with so much daring in his great works.
Crowe and Cavalcaselle imagine also that he
associated with Lorenzo Costa during his stay in
Mantua, and derived from him something of his
love for colour. This certainly could not have
been gained from Mantegna, whose art is severely
classic and sculpturesque; but Allegri's use of
chiaroscuro, his exquisite modelling, and his
gracious manner, if we may so call it, bear so
much closer affinity to Leonardo da Vinci than to
any other master, that it seems almost impossible
to doubt that in some way or another he also
caught inspiration from him.

However this may be, it is certain that when
he came back to Correggio, at about the age of
twenty-three, his fame was sufficiently established
in his native town for him to receive a commission
for an important altar-piece. This altar-piece, his
first authentic picture, painted in 1514 tor the con-
vent of San Francesco in Correggio, is now in the
Dresden Gallery. It represents the Madonna
enthroned, with St. Francis and other Saints, and is
distinguished by a more solemn religious feeling
yhan is observable in his later works. After
painting several other altar-pieces and religious
subjects in Correggio he received a commission
from the lady abbess of the convent of San
Paolo, in Parma, to decorate her nunnery with
paintings. He accordingly went to Parma in
1518, and accomplished that lovely series of
decorative paintings of mythological subjects
that are now reckoned among his most beautiful
works, although, strange to say, they remained
almost unknown for nearly two centuries.

On his return to Correggio in 1519, after this, his
first work in Parma, Allegri married a young girl
of sixteen, named Girolama Francesca, daughter
of Bartolummeo Merlini de Braghelis, arm-bearer to
the Marchese of Mantua. She brought her hus-
band some small fortune, and before this, in the
same year, 1519, he had received a legacy from
his maternal uncle, Francesco Ormani, of a house,
several acres of land, and other property, '' in con-
sideration of important services." His circum-
stances therefore could not have been straitened
at this time, although, owing to lawsuits and other
causes, he did not at once enter upon the posses-
sion either of his own or his wife's property. His
eldest son, Pomponio, was born on the 3rd of
September, 1521, in Correggio, the learned anato-
mist Lombard! standing god-father on the occasion
of the christening.

Allegri, from the time when he was first called
to Parma in 1518, appears to have kept up a
constant intercourse with that city, and after the

22



birth of his eldest son he went to reside. there
with his wife, three other children being bom to
him while in that city. " We have no trustworthy
account," says Dr. Meyer, " of the paintings
executed by Allegri, partly in Panna and partly
in Correggio, at this time." They were mostly
easel pictures, that are now scattered in various
galleries and are extremely difficult to identify,
numerous false works being attributed to this
time. Among the genuine ones, however, the
'Madonna kneeling in worship before the Divine
Infant,' in the Uffizi, so well known by means of
engraving and constant repetition, the ' Madonna
della Cesta,' in the National Gallery, and the
'Zingarella, or Madonna del Coniglio,' at Naples,
are generally thought to belong to this period,
and to have been suggested by his young wife
and child. In 1520 Allegri received a commission
for a fur larger work in Parma than any he had
hitherto done. This was the painting of the
cupola of the church of San Giovanni, for which
he entered into a contract with the Benedictines
of the convent of San Giovanni, signed on
July 6th, 1520. He did not, however, begin the
work until about the middle of 1521, and he
received the last instalment of the sum paid to
him for it on the 23rd of January, 1524, at which
date we may conclude that this splendid work was
quite finished, for in a document still extant, and
in Allegri's own writing, he declares himself to
have received "full payment for the remainder of
the works completed in the said church," and to
be "pleased, satisfied, and fully paid." The ex-
act amount of this 'full payment' is somewhat
difficult to determine, although the various sums
were found by Pungileoni to have been all
entered in the convent books. These amount,
when added up, to 272 ducats, and Dr. Meyer is
of opinion that Allegri did not receive more than
this small sum for his paintings in San Giovanni.
Other authorities make it up to 472 ducats. Some
of his paintings on the dome of San Giovanni are
still in existence, but much ruined by damp and
time. Many portions are scattered in galleries.
Their subject is the ' Ascension of Christ in the
midst of the Apostles,' a subject which gives full
play for the painter's marvellous powers. The
masterly foreshortening and sense of movement,
the brilliancy of the glowing figures, rising as it
were from a dark background, have called forth
the admiration of all critics.

Allegri's next important work in Parma was the
painting the dome of the cathedral, for which he
received the commission in 1522, though lie did
not begin the work till a later date. In the agree-
ment it is specified that lie shall receive 1000
gold ducats, equal to about 1500 of our present
money ; but numerous difficulties and disagree-
ments arose between the chapter of the cathe-
dral and the painter, and, in the end, the latter did
not finish more than half of the work stipulated,
nor receive more than half the payment. After
Allegri's death, indeed, the cathedral laid claim
to 140 lire from his heirs on account of some
unfinished works in the choir.

But although, as it would seem, Allegri failed
to satisfy the cathedral authorities, his paintings
in the dome of the cathedral being spoken of
disparagingly by contemporary critics as a " mere
hash of frogs," these paintings have been the
wonder and delight of succeeding generations.
The subject represented in the great dome is the



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PAINTERS AND ENGRAVERS.



' Assumption of the Virgin,' her form being borne
upwards on luminous clouds to heaven, whither she
is preceded by the Archangel Gabriel and a joyous
choir of angels, all in the most unconstrained
attitudes and action. The Apostles, froin below,
gaze upwards in ecstasy to view the heavenly
drama, and numerous jiutti, or boy angels, flutter
about, looking as though "about to burst open the
dome, and fly out into the open air." The entire
absence of all religious conventionality, and the
purely sensuous life exhibited in these paintings,
show a bold disregard for traditional treatment.

While he was executing these stupendous monu-
mental frescoes, Allegri also painted some of his
most perfect oil paintings. Chief among these
stand ' La Notte,' or 'The Night,' of the Dresden
Gallery, commissioned by a certain Alberto
Pratoiieri of Reggio, in 1522, for the church of
San Prospero. This world-famous picture is well
known, and need not be described. Sir David
Wilkie, who saw it during his travels in 1826,
epeaks of it as "the most original and poetical of
all Correggio's works," and one which " though
shorn of its beams from the treatment it has met
with, is, in its decay, still not less than an arch-
angel ruined." Since his time it has been re-
stored in 1827 by Palmaroli, and in 1858 by
Schinner, and it is stated by Dr. Meyer to "be
in good preservation, only the azure tints of the
high lights having somewhat suffered, and the
shadows grown darker." It is chiefly admired
for its marvellous effect of light, and the poetic
idea of making that light emanate from the new-
born babe.

The magnificent altar-piece, in the Parma Gallery,
of the Madonna wiili St. Jerome and the Magdalene,
called ' II Giorno,'or 'The Day,' is another of Cor-
reggio's works distinguished for its perfection in
the management of light and shade, and the volup-
tuous beauty of the Magdalene. Mengs says of this
graceful figure, that "whoever has not seen it is
ignorant of what the art of painting can achieve."
This great painting was executed for a certain
Donna Briseide Colla, of Parma, a widow lady,
who paid the painter more liberally than any of
his other patrons, giving him, it seems, over and
above the stipulated sum of 80 scudi, various
presents, consisting of " two cartloads of faggots,
several bushels of wheat, and a pig." According
to Dr. Meyer, Allegri did not disdain to thus
receive payment in kind from some of his less
wealthy patrons, and possibly it is upon some tra-
dition of this sort that Vasari's absurd story of
his dying under a weight of copper money was
founded. The ' Madonna della Scodella,' in the
Parma Academy, the 'Madonna and St. Sebas-
tian,' and the ' Mndonna and St. George,' at
Dresden, are likewise considered to belong to this
time of highest achievement.

In 1530, Allegri left Parma, and returned to
Correggio, having before this (probably about the
67id of 1528) lost his young wife. He appears to
have now made up his mind to settle in his native
town, where he lived in a good house in the Borgo
Veechio (probably the one which he had inherited
from his uncle). He also bought an estate in
November, 1530, for 195 scudi, and in 1533 a few
acres of land. About this time we frequently find
his name mentioned as witness, he being at one
time summoned to witness the payment of the
marriage portion of Clara, the daughter of the
Lord of Correggio, all of which facts prove that



he must have been a man of some means and
importance in his native city.

Besides Allegri's great religious pictures, he
painted a number of mythological subjects, for
which his style was admirably adapted. The
sensuous qualities of his art have full play in
such works as the ' Jupiter and Antiope'of the
Louvre, the ' Education of Cupid,' in tlie National
Gallery, the ' Danae ' of the Borghese Gallery,
and the ' Leda ' of the Berlin Museum. Most of
these works were executed, it is supposed, during
the last years of the painter's life, but the exact
dates are uncertain.

Vasari states that Allegri painted two of these
pictures the ' Leda,' and the ' Danae,' described
by him as 'Venus' forthe Duke of Mantua, who
afterwards presented them to the Emperor Charles
V., and there seems no reason to doubt his inform-
ation in this particular. It is probable, however,
that Allegri became known to the duke not
through the intervention of Giiilio Romano, as has
been supposed, but rather through the recommend-
ation of Veronica Gambara, the second wife of
Giberto of Correggio, who was a lady of great
learning, and who founded an Academy in Cor-
reggio. A letter dated September 3, 1528, is
extant from this lady to her friend Beatrice
d" Este, Duchess of Mantua, inviting her to " come
and see the c/ief d'ontvre of the ' Magdalene in the
Desert,' just finished by the Messer Antonio Allegri.
It astonishes all who behold it." The cause of
Allegri's death at the early age of 40 is unknown.
It was probably sudden, for he had entered upon a
new commission shortly before. He died on the
5th of March, 1534, and was buried the next day
in the Franciscan church at Correggio, a simple
wooden tablet marking the spot. In the 18th
century, when his grave was sought for, it could
not be found, though a skull purporting to be his
is preserved in the Academy of Modena.

Allegri's art was thoroughly individual. Vasari
rightly calls him pittore singolarissimo, but by
the sensuous character of his painting he is
more nearly allied to the school of Venice than to
the severer intellectual schools of Padua or
Florence. Perhaps what mostly distinguishes his
style from that of every other master, is his
delicate perception of the minutest gradations of
light and shade. His chiaroscuro has been praised
by artists ns simply perfect. It sheds a wonder-
ful atmosphere of light and delight over all his
works, and his figures seem literally to live in
radiant glory. Allegri's Madonnas are beautiful,
joyous mothers, endowed with every human
charm ; but with none of the spirituality that
Raphael infused into the old ascetic type. He
departed, in fact, as far as the Venetian masters
from the old religious ideal, and like them made
aesthetic perfection his sole aim.

CHIEF AUTHENTIC WORKS.

FRESCOES.

Fresco paintings in the nunnery of San Paolo. 1518.
St. John ; fresco above a doorway in San Giovanni.
Frescoes in the dome of San Giovanni. 15211522.
Frescoes in the dome of the cathedral at Parma. 1526

1530.
Madonna della Scala ; fresco now in the Academy at

Parma.
The Annunciation ; fresco formerly in the church of the

Annunziata in Parma ; recently restored and removed
I from the wall.

23



A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF



OIL PAINTINGS.

Madonna of St. Francis ; Dresden Gallery. 1514.
Martyrdom of SS. Placidus and Flavia; Academy at

Parma. 15221524?
La Notte, or The Night ; Dresden Gallery. 1522

1530.
II Giorno, or St. Jerome ; Academy at Parma. 1527

1528?

Madonna and St. George ; Dresden. About 1530.
Madonna and St. Sebastian ; Dresden. 1525.
Marriage of St. Catherine ; Louvre. 1517 1519.
Virgin in Adoration ; Uffizi, Florence.
Madonna della Cesta ; National Gallery. 15lO ?
La Zingarella; Naples Gallery.
Sposalizio di S. Caterina; Museo, Naples.
St. Antonio ; Cbiesa dei Girolamiui, Naples.
Adorazione dei Magi ; Brera, Milan.
Adorazione dei Pastori ; Galleria Crespi, Milan.
Madonna col figlio ; Museo del Castello, Milan.
Raccolta Malaspina, Pavia.

Galleria, Modena.
Madonna e Santi ; Sigmariugeu.
Madonna and Child ; Benson Collection, London.
St. Marta ; Lord Ashburton.
Eest in Egypt ; Uffizi, Florence.
Sacra Conversatione ; Ritter Gallery, Vienna.
Chri.-t in the Garden of Gethsemane ; Aspley House ;

given by the King of Spain to the Duke of Wel-
lington.

Ecce Homo ; National Gallery.
Jupiter aud Antiope ; Louvre, formerly in the possession

of Charles I.

Education of Cupid; National Gallery.
lo and Jupiter ; Vienna Gallery.
Leda; Berlin Gallery.
Daniie ; Borghese Gallery in P,ome.
The Triumphs of Virtue and Vice; two allegorical

sketches in tempera, in the Louvre.

BIBLICGRAPIIY.
Ricci, C., 'Correggio, Life and Time.' London,

1896.

JBrinton, S., ' Correggio.' London, 1900. _
Punc/ileoni, ' Memorie istoriche di Antomo Allegri. 6

vo'ls. Parma, 1817.
Raphael Mtnys, 'Life and Works of Ant. Allegn.

1870.

Pietro Martini, ' II Correggio.' 1871.
Quirino Bigi, Antonio Allegri da Correggio.' Parma,

1860; 2nd edit., 1873.



Julius Meyer, ' Antonio Allegri da Correggio.' First
appeared in the 'Allgemeines Kunstler-Lesicon ' iu
1870. English translation, edited by Mrs. Charles
Heaton. 1876.

/. P. Richter, ' Antonio Allegri, gen. Correggio, in
the ' Kunst und Kiinstler.' 1879.

ALLEGRI, LORENZO, an inferior Italian painter
of whom very little is known. He was uncle to
the celebrated Antonio Allegri, called Correggio,
and is said to have been his first instructor in the
rules of art. In 1503 he painted a picture for the
convent of San Francesco in Correggio, but no
work by his hand is now known to exist. He died
in 1527, leaving bis property to his brother
Pellegrino, and his nephew Antonio, by whom he
was much beloved.

ALLEGRI, POTIPONIO, son of Antonio Allegri,
was born in 1521. He was only thirteen years of
age when his father died, so be could not have
received much training from him, but he is said
to have studied under Kondani, who may likewise
be considered a follower of Allegri. Pomponio
inherited a considerable fortune from his father
and grandfather, and appears for some time to
have held a good position in Correggio. He
afterwards, however, sold most of his landed
property, and his affairs became involved. He
was altogether an inferior painter, although he



appears to have been greatly employed, and
received many important commissions. One of
his altar-pieces, showing the influence of his
father, is in the Academy at Parma. It represents
' Moses showing the Israelites the Tables of the
Law.' Other works are in various churches. He
sometimes signed himself POMPONIO L&TI, latin-
izing the name of Allegri, as his father also did
occasionally. He was still living in 1593. After
his time the family of Allegri appears to have
fallen into poverty, and to have become extinct.

M. M. H.

ALLEGRINI, FRANCESCO, called DA GDBBIO.
This painter was born at Gubbio in 1587, and was
a disciple of Giuseppe Cesare. He painted his-
torical subjects, and executed many worKs, both
in oil and in fresco, for the churches and palaces
at Rome. Works by him are also in Gubbio, in
Genoa, and Savona. He had a great number of
scholars, amongst whom were his son, FLAMINIO,
and his daughter, ANGELICA, who also painted
historical subjects. He died in 1663 at Rome.

ALLEGRINI, FRANCESCO, a designer and en-
graver, was born at Florence, about the year 1729.
In 1762, he published, in conjunction with his
brother Giuseppe, a collection of one hundred por-
traits of the family of the Medici, with a frontis-
piece, engraved by himself. He also engraved
fourteen portraits of Florentine poets, painters,
and other eminent personages. We have also a
print by him of the statue of St. Francis of Assisi,
which is held in much veneration at Siena.

ALLEGKINI, GIUSEPPE, brother of Francesco,
an Italian engraver, who flourished about the year
1746. We have the following plates by him :

The Virgin Mary with the Infant Jesus ; half figures,
with this inscription, Eyrcdietur Virgo de radice, $c.

The Circumcision.

The Stoning of St. Stephen.

A small print of llinaldo and Armida.

A large operatic scene; after Cltamont.

ALLEMAND, L'. See L'ALLEMAKD.

ALLEN, FOLPERT VAN OUDEN, a designer and
engraver of Utrecht, flourished in the second half
of the 17th century. The view of the city_of
Vienna, engraved by J. Mulder, is from a drawing
by this artist, made in 1686 ; and he has himself
engraved a large plate of the city of Prague, a
slight print, with several figures. He died in 1715.

ALLEN, JAMES BAYLIS, an engraver, who was
born at Birmingham in 1802, was first engaged in
the business of his father, a button manufacturer ;
but afterwards became a pupil of Vincent Barber,
and migrated to London in 1824, where he died
in 1876. The chief works he engraved were :

P.attle of theMeeanee; after Armitage.

The Columns of St. Mark; after Bonington.

Bucentaur; after Canaletto.

The Dogana ;' after Canaletto.

The Battle of Borodino; after G. Jones, R.A.

Lady Godiva; after G. Jones, R.A.

The Fiery Furnace ; after G. Jones, R.A.

The Death of Nelson ; after Turner.

Phryne going to the Bath as Venus; after Turner.

The" Decline of Carthage ; after Turner.

The Temple of Jupiter Panhellenium ; after Turner.

ALLEN, JAMES C., an engraver, a native of
London, became a pupil of William Cooke, with
whom he published, in 1821, fifteen engravings of
views of the interior and exterior of the Coliseum
at Rome. One of his best plates was the ' Defeat of
the Spanish Armada,' after De Loutherbourg, 1831.
He also executed numerous book-illustrations.



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ALLEN, JOSEPH W., the son of a schoolmaster
at Hammersmith, was born in Lambeth in 1803.
He was educated at St. Paul's School, and was
afterwards for a short time usher in an academy
at Taunton. Discovering a talent for drawing, he
came back to London, resolved to adopt the brush
as his means of living. In the first instance ho
became an assistant to a picture dealer, under whom
he acquired a considerable knowledge of the old
masters, and the pecuniary value of their works.
He afterwards took to scene painting, in associa-
tion with Charles Tomkins and Clarkson Stanfield :
and during Madame Vestris's first lesseeship of the
Olympic Theatre, he painted most of the scenery
for her. The natural bent of his genius, however,
was for pastoral landscape, and the varied pictur-
esque features of English scenery ; and his little
fresh, green, and true bits of nature soon at-
tracted admirers and purchasers. As time went
on, his talent became manifestly more matured,
and he was noted, amongst other things, as an ex-
cellent painter of distances. ' The Vale of Clwyd,'
exhibited in 1847, created a considerable sensa-
tion, and was purchased by an Art Union prize-
holder for three hundred guineas; and Allen
repeated it twice in smaller dimensions, for other
purchasers. ' Leith Hill/ in the following year,
was almost equally successful. His subjects were



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