Marie de Medici commissioned the tremendous Medici Cycle, painted by Rubens, to decorate her Luxembourg Palace in Paris and to rouse feelings of sympathy and compassion from King Louis XIII. The highly charged political statement within the Medici Cycle also must be read within the context of its bold religious references. The cycle includes allusions to the wisdom of Marie and distinct references to the queen mother as the Virgin Mary, and more specifically, as the Virgo Lactans or nurturing Madonna.  Rubens portrayed Marie as her patron saint and personified the queen as Wisdom in order to turn the heart of her son and gain his loyalty. The Medici Cycle remains a unique biographic document containing a large amount of political propaganda, but unfortunately the work of Rubens could not mend the relationship of a mother and son; Marie de Medici, represented as the illustrious mother of mothers, died in exile and virtual poverty at Cologne on July 3, 1642.