MEMPHIS                                                  1202                                            MENELEK II

remains of which are still to be found. It was a large city, about 17 miles in circuit according to some writers, having communication both with the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. It had a large trade, and was the seat of learning and religion. It was the capital for nearly a thousand years. It was conquered by Sennacherib and by the Persians ; Alexander the Great worshiped at the shrine of the sacred bull; and the first Ptolemies were crowned in its temples. Ptolemy VIII destroyed the city, and it fell with the rest of Egypt under the Roman power. Its temples were magnificent, including those of Isis, the Apis, Ptah, (where was kept the sacred bull) and Serapis, where was a nilometer to record the floods of the Nile. Most remarkable of all the ruins are the pyramids, including the great pyramid of Cheops and the statue of the Sphinx. Memphis remained the chief city until Alexandria was built, when it fell into ruins, and for a long time even its site was unknown. The village of Mitrahenny now marks the spot, and the ruins of temples, palaces and statues cover hundreds of acres. See Story of Ancient Egypt by Rawlinson and Egypt from 4400 B. C. by Clement.

Memphis, a city of Tennessee, in Shelby County, is built on a bluff, 35 feet above high water, on the Mississippi. Its river and railroad communications bring it a large trade. It is one of the largest cotton-markets in the country, and has numerous foundries and machine-shops and some of the largest oil-mills in the United States, producing over $1,000,000 worth of cottonseed oil a year. It has a large lumber-trade, with 1,000 lumber mills in the region. It is a handsome city, with many fine public buildings, including a custom-house, cotton-exchange, Roman Catholic college, large hospitals, theaters and splendid hotels. An epidemic of yellow fever in 1878 and 1879 destroyed nearly 10,000 inhabitants; since then a new system of drainage has been introduced, and the water is supplied from the finest artesian wells, making Memphis one of the healthiest cities of the country. The public-school system is planned on modern lines and attracts much attention. Population 131,105.

Memphremagog (mĕm'frê-mă'gŏg), Lake, on the northern border of Vermont, adjoining Quebec, is about 35 miles long and from two to five wide. It has many islands and an abundant supply of fish. Owl's Head and Sugar Loaf are mountains on the western shore, and the whole region is picturesque.

Menai Strait {men'î), a channel separating the island of Anglesea from Wales. It is 14 miles long and from 200 yards to two miles wide. Navigation is difficult, but the passage is much used, as it saves time. The channel is crossed by a suspension-bridge built in 1825 and by the famous

Britannia bridge built in 1850. This is a tubular iron bridge, used for railroads. Mendelssohn» {men'dels-son) Bartholdy,

Felix, the composer, was born at Hamburg, Germany, Feb. 3, 1809. The name was already famous through his grandfather, Moses Mendelssohn the philosopher, but his father determined to bring up his children as Christians, and added Bartholdy to the name to distinguish them from the Jewish branch of the family. At eight Mendelssohn studied music, and two years later he appeared in a concert in Berlin. In 1820 he began his work of musical composition, which ended only with his death. His operas of Camancho's Wedding and Midsummer Night's Dream, were published in 1825 and 1826; and in 1827 the former was produced in Berlin. _ He formed a choir for the study of Bach's passion-music, ending a famous performance in 1829. He visited England in April, 1829, making his first appearance in a concert of the Philharmonic Society at London. He visited Munich, Vienna, Rome and Paris before returning to Berlin. He spent two years at Düsseldorf having charge of some musical and dramatical entertainments. Leipsic became his home in 1835, where he took charge of the Gewandhaus concerts, visiting England in 1837 and 1840 and Berlin for a year in 1841, at the command of the king. In England he conducted his St. Paul, which was very popular, and in Berlin he composed Antigone and CEdipus. His oratorio of Elijah, on which he spent nine years, was composed for the Birmingham festival and was brought out there in 1846. He was eminent not only as a composer, the list of his works being very large, but as a pianist and organist. He also had a gift for drawing and improvisation. But his excessive labors brought on a brain trouble from which he died on Nov. 4, 1847, at his home. See his Letters and the Life by Mos-cheles and by Lampadius.

Mendez-Pinto (men'dez pen'to), Fernao, was a Portuguese adventurer, born about 1510. He first saw Japan while in the service of a Chinese pirate, and at Ningpo his stories of its wealth induced the Portuguese to visit the new country. He made three other visits to Japan, once in company with St. Francis Xavier, once as ambassador from the Portuguese viceroy of India. His fortune, which was enormous, he devoted almost entirely to founding a Roman Catholic seminary in Japan. He wrote the story of his life, which is now accepted as true, though for many years thought to be greatly exaggerated. He died on July 8, 1583. See Japan.

Men'dicant Orders. See Dominicans and Franciscans.

Men'elek II, King of Abyssinia, is the son of a king of Shoa, and claims to be descended from Solomon and the Queen of