Historical and Commemorative Medals
Collection of Benjamin Weiss


DUPRE, G.: France, 1613, Bronze (Hollow cast, holed), 92 mm
Obv: Bust of Maria Magdalena (l). MAR. MAGDALENÆ. ARCH. AVSTR. MAG.D. ETR
Rev: Blank, hollow cast
Signed: GDP 1613
Ref: Jones vol 2, 86/44; Pollard vol 2, 644/643; Kress 562; Molinari 66/247;  Weiss BW809

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1589–1631) (also seen as Maria Maddalena) was the daughter of Charles II, Archduke of Inner Austria, and Maria Anna of Bavaria. In 1608, she married Cosimo II de' Medici, then Grand Prince of Tuscany. This marriage was arranged to reduce Spain’s animosity towards Tuscany. She became Grand Duchess of Tuscany in 1609, at the time of her husband's accession as Grand Duke of Tuscany, and so remained until his death in 1621. At that time their ten-year old son Ferdinando became grand duke, with Maria Magdalena and her mother-in-law, Christina of Lorraine, acting as regents. The two women aligned Tuscany with the Papacy and greatly increased the number and power of the Tuscan clergy, thereby facilitating the persecution and trial of Galileo Galilei, the great Italian physicist, mathematician and astronomer. Their collective intrigues led ultimately to the decline of Tuscany.

With Cosimo II, Maria had eight children, including: Ferdinando II, Grand Duke of Tuscany; Cardinal Gian Carlo; Margherita, Duchess of Parma; Mattias, Governor of Siena; Prince Francesco; Anna, Archduchess of Austria; and Leopold, Governor of Siena.

LINK to Portrait and Biography of Maria Magdalena (from wikipedia)