Merighi [Merichi, Merigi], Antonia Margherita [Teresa ]
- Winton Dean
(b Bologna; fl 1711–40; d by 1764). Italian contralto. For a long time she was in the service of the Dowager Grand Duchess Violante Beatrice of Tuscany. In 1711 she sang Selvaggio in Floriano Arresti's L'enigma disciolto in Lugo. She sang in several operas at Florence (1714–16) and regularly in Venetian theatres (1717–21, 1724–6, 1732–3), appearing in 19 operas, the first of them Vivaldi's Tieteberga. In 1718 she was in Vivaldi's Armida al campo d'Egitto at Mantua. She had a great success in Bologna in Gasparini's Sesostri (1719), and sang in at least 19 operas in Naples (1721–4, 1728–9), often in male roles, in Parma and Florence in 1725, Turin in 1726 and Bologna again in 1727. In 1729 Handel engaged her at a high salary for London, where she was advertised as ‘a Woman of a very fine Presence, an excellent Actress, and a very good Singer – A Counter Tenor’, and remained for two seasons. She created Matilda in ...