According to Richard of St. Laurent (d. c. 1250), De laudibus beatae Mariae virginis libri xii, lib. 2, cap. 1:
Because the Son of God, whose every action is a lesson for Christians,
honors and magnifies his mother, according to the commandment, Exodus
20:12: "Honor your father and mother."
2. Because the Holy Spirit commands that Mary be honored, Psalm 98:5: "Adore the footstool of his feet, because it is holy."
Because whatever reverence and honor is shown to the mother redounds
wholly unto the son, and vice versa. Whence Ecclesiasticus 4:15: "Those
who serve her serve the holy one," that is, Christ, who is the holy of
4. Because through her and in her and out of
her, the glory of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit is
increased. Whence Psalm 47:2: "Great is the Lord and greatly to be
praised, in the city of our God, in his holy mountain."
Because through her and in her and with her and by her the world has,
had and will have every good, that is, Christ, who is every good and the
highest good and the one without whom there is no good, who alone is
good, whence he says, Luke 18:19: "No one is good except God alone."
6. Because with Mary is found every good. Whence she says, Proverbs 8:35: "He who finds me, finds life and will receive salvation from the Lord."
Because she loves those who love her, nay, rather, she serves those
who serve her. Whence she says, Proverbs 8:17: "I love those who love
8. Because it is the highest honor, the greatest glory and the greatest utility to serve Mary and to be one of her household (familia). For to serve her is to reign, just as Boethius says of the Lord.
Because drawing water with the bucket of humble and devout prayer from
the fountain of life that is by God, rather that is God himself, she
sprinkles her servants with great drops, especially if they have
suitable vessels [to catch the water in].
10. Because she
reconciles her servants and lovers most effectively with her angry Son:
for she speaks peace to her people and over her saints [Psalm 84:9].
11. Because it is her benignity that no one should be frightened to come to her.
12. Because so great is her mercy that she drives no one away from her.
Because she builds up her servants with gifts and charisms that they
might become a worthy habitation for her Son and the Holy Spirit.
Proverbs 14:1: "The wise woman builds her house," that is, her household
Because she adorns her servants with manifold virtues like many clothes,
as represented by Dorcas, who clothed the poor [Acts 9:39].
Because she offers up the prayers and sacrifices of her servants, and
especially those that are dedicated to her, in the sight of the divine
16. Because just as the Son is the mediator between God
and man, so she is our mediator with the Son, that is, through her
mediation the Son comes to us and by way of her as mediator we come to
17. Because she is our advocate with the Son, just as
the Son is our advocate with the Father; rather, she brings our troubles
and petitions to the Father and the Son.
18. Because she
represents those invoking her humbly with sweet words before her angry
Son, at which the Son is easily pacified.
19. Because for the
salvation of her servants, she is able not only to supplicate her Son
like the other saints, but also to command him with her maternal
20. Because she is the tree of life for all those who lay hold of her [Proverbs 3:18] with particular love and service.
21. Because often those whom the justice of the Son condemns, the mercy of the mother sets free.
Because given that she is the treasury of the Lord and the treasurer
of his graces, she enriches abundantly those serving her with spiritual
23. Because confessing the virgin birth leads to salvation, from which the blessing of God the Father follows.
Because she protects her servants most effectively from the threefold
adversary, namely the world, the flesh and the devil, for whom she is
terrible as the ordered ranks of the army [Song of Songs 6:3].
25. Because in Mary all those find refuge who fearing the justice of God are afraid to come to him.
Because she gives food to the hungry and drink to those who thirst.
Whence it may be said of her just as of the Son: "Cast your thoughts on
the Lady (Domina), and she will nourish you" [cf. Psalm 54:23].
Because given that she is the mother of wisdom who is the Son of God,
she mercifully instructs her servants in the law of the Son. Whence it
is said concerning her, Wisdom 7:27: "She constitutes friends of God and
prophets," that is, the wise.
28. Because if her favor has been
withdrawn from you on account of your sins, as swiftly as you will
repent, it will be returned to you. Whence she says with the Son,
Zacharias 1:3: "Return to me, and I shall return to you."
Because our salvation is in her hand, such that we Christians ought to
say to her more truly than the Egyptians said to Joseph, Genesis 47:25:
"Our salvation is in your hand."
30. Because by serving her are
attained days of grace and glory. Whence she says to her servant,
Proverbs 9:11: "For by me your days will be multiplied, and years will
be added to your life."
31. Because after the Son she is Lady (Domina) of all creatures: whence she is called Lady, and for that reason ought to be served like a Lady.
32. Because he who loves and honors the mother of the Lord, freely is able to ask mercy from the Father and the Son.
Because through the incarnation of the Word that was accomplished in
her, the sinful soul is returned to the unity of the Church.
34. Because through Mary and Christ whom we have through Mary, whatever we lost through Adam and Eve is restored to us.
Because through her conception and giving birth the wonderful dignity
and prerogative of human nature is increased, namely, because the Son of
God about to redeem the world assumed not angelic nature, but rather
human nature in her and through her.
36. Because wishing us to
attain victory that we might win the crown, and knowing that he will not
be crowned unless he competes legitimately, she arranges wars and
temptations for her lovers, and permits them to be afflicted from time
to time: but she gives success with temptation, so that they are able to
bear up and aids them with virtue that they might achieve the crown:
for she is the one who gives strength to the weary with her prayers,
merits and examples.
37. Because those who serve her in the present will see her most glorious face in the future.
Because she rewards her servants with the glorious fruit of her womb,
just as she is depicted in her images holding her Son, as if giving him
to her servants, herself being the propagatrix operariorum.
Because she protects the souls of her servants going out of their
bodies from the attack of the powers of the air, to whom she is terrible
as the ordered ranks of an army, just as is often read in her miracles.
Because she will glorify in the future those serving and honoring her
in the present. Whence she says with the Son, 1 Kings 2:30: "Whoever
will have honored me, I will glorify him: who however contemns me will
be cast down (ignobiles)."
--B. Alberti Magni...Opera omnia, ed. A. and E. Borgnet, vol. 36 (Paris: L. Vives, 1898), pp. 59-81, my translation.