( Originally Published Early 1900's )
THE home life of the painter of the "Miracle of St. Mark" was, without doubt, a happy one. Seven children moved within its circle : two sons, of whom Domenico is well known as an artist, and five daughters. Marietta, her father's favorite and his pupil, was not only gifted as a portrait painter, but skilled in music, being a fine performer on the lute and a talented singer. She seems to have been the soul of the artistic gatherings which took place in her father's house — where might be seen such artists as Bassano, Paul Veronese, and Schiavoni, together with Alessandro Vittoria, the sculptor, and where music was represented by Giuseppe Zarlino, the chapelmaster of St. Mark's.
Marietta became the wife of one Mario Augusta, a German jeweller, but did not live to reach the high rank in art which her early successes indicated. She fell into ill health and died in 1590, when but thirty years of age, four years before her father's death. They rest together in the church of S. Madonna dell' Orto, in Venice.
Cogniet's striking picture of Tintoretto painting a portrait of his daughter, as she lies dead before him, hangs in the Museum of Bordeaux. We know nothing of the whereabouts of the great artist's portrait of Marietta after death, if it still exists. The Museum of Madrid has a portrait of a fair young Venetian holding a rose in her hand, which is from the brush of Tintoretto, and is thought to be a likeness of his favorite daughter, but this was done from life.
Mrs. Margaret J. Preston's fine poem, "Tintoretto's Last Painting," should be associated with Cogniet's picture.
Leon Cogniet was born at Paris in 1794, and studied under Guerin, winning the Great Prize of Rome in 1817. He spent the rest of his long life (he died in 1880) in painting portraits and historical subjects, and in teaching. His " Marius among the Ruins of Carthage," and his Numa " were purchased by the government. The "National Guard Marching to join the Army in 1792," is at Versailles, together with the "Battle of Rivoli," and other military pictures. One of Cogniet's best known works was "The Massacre of the Innocents," which he exhibited in 1824.