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MENGS


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MENGS


once moved to volunteer for the work. Ordained in March, 1840, he sailed with Father Cotling, another volunteer, from Leghorn on 23 July, and after a tedious nine weeks' voyage landed at Philadclpliia. From Baltimore the missionaries found their way to the University of Georgetown, District of Colum- bia, and a little later to 8t. Louis, where it was de- cided Father Cotling should remain. Mengarini was chosen for the distant mission of the upper Missouri, partly on account of his voice and knowledge of music — possessions of no little value in Indian mission work. On 24 April, 1S41, Fathers De Smet, Mengarini, and Point, with the lay brothers Specht, Huett, and Classens, and nine other companions, began the long journey by river and overland trail to Fort Hall, Idaho, then a trading post, where they arrived on the Feast of the Assumption (15 August), antl found a party of Flatheads waiting to conduct them to their final destination. It was nearly a month later when they arrived at the chosen site on St. Mary's river, Montana, in the Flatheatl country, and began the foundations of the log mission, the missionaries themselves leading the work of cutting the frozen earth with axes. The church and house were of logs plastered between with clay, and were thatched with reeds, the rooms bemg partitioned with curtains of deerskin and thin scraped deerskin being used in lieu of glass for the windows. The winter cold was so intense that the buffalo-skin robes in which they wrapped themselves at night were frozen stiff, and hatl to be thawed out each morning. To the native of sunny Italy these early winters in Montana mountains were among the most vivid recollections of later years.

The missionaries at once began the study of the lan- guage, translating into it simple prayers and hymns. Mengarini composed a Salish grammar which is still the standard for the cognate dialects. He taught the children to sing in Salish hymns of his own compo- sition, and even trained an Indian band for service on feast days. The work progressed until 1849, when, in consequence of the inroads of the Blackfeet and the defection and relapse of a large part of the Flathead trilje under a rival claimant for the chief- tainship, it was decided to close the mission, and Mengarini was summoned to join Father Accolti, the superior of the north-western Jesuit missions, in Ore- gon. About a year later, on request of Archbishop Alemany of San Francisco for Jesuit workers, he was sent to aid in establishing at Santa Clara the Calif or- nian mission which was the nucleus of the present college. In the meantime the repentant Flatheads had sent to Oregon to ask for his return. They were told this was impossible as he was then assigned to another station, but on their urgent desire the Flat- head mission was re-established at St. Ignatius in 1851. Mengarini remained at Santa Clara for the rest of his life, acting for thirty years as treasurer or vice- president, until a stroke of apoplexy and failing sight caused his retirement from active duties. The hard- est trial came when his eyes became too weak to allow him to read Mass. A third stroke of apoplexy ended his life work in his seventy-sixth year.

Mengarini's principal contribution to philology is his " Selish or Flathead Grammar; Grammatica lingua; Selicae" — published by the Cramoisy Press (New York, 1861) from the third manuscript copy, the first two, laboriously written out by him, having been lost by Indian carelessness or accident. Originally in- tended solely for the use of the missionaries, it was written in Latin, and he himself always said that the first draft was the most correct. He also furnished vocabularies of the cognate Salishan languages — of Shwoyelpi (Colville), S'chitzui (Cceur d'Alene), and Salish proper (Flathead) in Powell's "Contributions to North American Ethnology", I (Washington, 1877), and of the Santa Clara dialect of California in


Powers's "Tribes of California", volume III of the same series, published in the same year. He con- tributed some linguistic notes in the " Journal of the Anthropological Institute of New York", I (1871-2). His interesting personal memoir, " The Rocky Moun- tains", published in the Woodstock Letters for 1888, was dictated a few months before his death.

In addition to the memoir just mentioned, consult Obituary Notice in Woodstock Letters, XVI (Woodstocli, Maryland, 1S87); SoMMERVOGEL, BM. de la C. de J., Bibliogr., V (new ed., Brussels and Paris, 1894); Pilling, Bibliography 0/ the Salishan Languages in Bur. Artier. Ethnology (Washington, 1893); Shea, Catholic Missions (New York, 1854).

James Mooney.

Mengs, Anthon Rafael, Bohemian painter, usu- ally regarded as belonging to the Italian or Spanish school, b. at Aussig in Bohemia, 12 March, 1728; d. in Rome, 29 June, 1779. He received his instruction from his father, Ismael Mengs, who went to Dresden while his son was quite young, and in 1741 moved to Rome, where he copied in miniature some works of Raphael for the Elector of Saxony, which were in- tended for Dresden. From his youth Mengs was an energetic and skilful artist, and he was appointed a painter to the Elector of Saxony before he was sixteen years old, his skill in crayon portraiture having at- tracted attention in Dresden. He did not, however, feel disposed to accept the position, and declined it with becoming modesty, returning to Rome, devoting himself to his studies, and working with his father for four years. In Rome he married Margarita Quazzi, a poor and virtuous peasant girl who had sat tor him as a model. At the same time Mengs became a Catholic, and the marriage took place in the Catholic church. Shortly afterwards he returned again to Dresden with his father, but speedily had a serious difficulty with him, being turned with his wife and daughter into the street. The King of Poland, who was then Elector of Saxony, promptly named him a second time as a painter in ordinary to the Royal household, and employed him to decorate the Catholic church in Dresden. Ow- ing to difficulties in the king's finances, Mengs went again to Rome in 1752, and was there employed by the Duke of Northumberland to make copies of several important pictures by Raphael still in the possession of the present holder of the title, and to be seen at Al- bury and Alnwick. For many years Mengs supported himself in Rome by various commissions, as all his in- come from Dresden had been stopped, the Emperor Frederick having driven the King of Poland out of Saxony. It was at this time that Mengs painted a superb fresco on the dome of the church of St. Euse- bius in Rome, and another very important work in the Villa Albani. He then went on to Naples, and exe- cuted various commissions, painting an important altar-piece for Caserta, and some portraits, but quickly returned to Rome for a short time, and was then pressed to enter the service of the Spanish King, Charles III. He arrived at Madrid in 1761. Here he carried out a very large number of commissions, and was a member, and eventually the director of the Academy of St. Ferdinand. Once more he went back to Rome for the sake of his health, and was einployetl Ijy Clement XIV in the Vatican. He then returned to Madrid in 1773, and painted "the Apotheosis of Tra- jan" in the royal palace, and several other pictures for Charles III. Again his health broke down, and he finally returned to Rome, where his wife died. He also died there, and was buried in the church of San Michele, where there is a bronze monument to his memory.

Mengs was a skilful writer, as well as a clever painter, but a man of melancholy disposition, and of strange, stern habits, too sparing in his diet, and given to over-exertion. He was an affectionate father and husband, but somewhat improvident, and had so little faith in his own profession that he refused to allow hia children to be educated for it. As a copyist, he had