On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

She was born in a tribe of Indians, was sold to a circus as a child, became famous throughout the world as the ugliest woman, traveled a lot, had huge success among men, died at the age of 26 in cold Moscow and was buried in her native Mexico 153 years later ...

With her example, the monkey woman, Julia Pastrana, proved that beautiful appearance is not the most important thing. For most of his life, Julia was not considered a member of the human race. But at the same time she was kind, made a good career and earned a lot of money. In general, her life is full of secrets and mysteries. When she began performing on Broadway, the reaction to her was usually very cruel: the people in the hall seemed to be horrified by the fact that she looked like a monster, but at the same time she danced gracefully and sang like an angel.

When you look at her photo, you understand how cruel the fate of this girl was, without giving her absolutely nothing attractive and collecting all the flaws: tiny height (only 140 cm), rough and absolutely devoid of charm facial features, crooked teeth, and most importantly - terrible hairiness all over the body.

Charles Darwin described this woman as follows: “The Spanish dancer Julia Pastrana struck me with her perfect dance. But she has a thick male beard and hairy forehead. The teeth of this incredibly ugly, but charming woman are also of interest. Double rows of teeth grow on the upper and lower jaws. And one row is placed in the other. ”

It should be noted that the girl was born in an Indian tribe. That is, she was an Indian by birth. But very little is known about her childhood and youth. It is believed that until 1854 she worked as a maid in a wealthy Mexican family. Then she was seen by an American with the surname of Wrights. He persuaded the girl to go to the States and earn big money there by participating in a freak show. Already in New York, Theodore Post, specializing in such shows, bought the ugly woman.

According to another version, Theodore Post bought the girl back at the age of 10 right from her mother. He taught her to sing, dance, and also to speak, read, and write in three languages.After that, the girl went on a world tour under the name of Bearded Lady.

At that time, a woman could make good money on her ugly appearance. Crowds of people came to see the living exhibit. In addition to her exotic appearance, the girl was very plastic and danced well.

Her first performance was held in New York, in the Gothic Hall. The success was deafening! Soon Julia toured many cities, gathering rooms and getting richer day by day. According to the remaining articles in the newspapers of those years, Julia was so popular that her appearance did not repel young people, they curled around the girl, trying, if not to achieve her favor, then at least to dance with her. According to numerous memoirs of contemporaries, Julia was kind-hearted, always cheerful, sweet, not stupid.

The fame of Julia reached Europe, where she went on tour in the late fifties. The tour did not interfere with the privacy of Julia. It may seem that men wanted to get her attention in order to get a person that other men do not have and who can boast to their friends. Julia has repeatedly made offers of hands and hearts, but she refused to all applicants.The reason - their pockets are not filled with money. The girl earned well and did not want the gigolos “sucking in” to her, ready to endure her hairy face for the sake of money.

As a result, Julia’s husband was her then entrepreneur Theodore Lent. According to his confession, he did not love his bride, but only wanted all the money they earned (and there were a lot of them) did not go to the side, to someone else. The marriage was concluded in 1857.

In 1859, a couple came to perform in Russia. Here is how her performance was announced in an advertisement distributed at Moscow fairs: “But the Brazilian monkey Julia Pastrana! The tricky German put in a cage and for money seems to tell a story about her! And his monster is in a crinoline party! ”Such a splinter-splint poster was designed for a simple audience. For the gentlemen, the tone of the messages was more impressive: “In the Hermitage Garden there was a great entertainment and musical evening in which the famous phenomenon of Miss Julia Pastrana would have the honor to appear before the Moscow public. Entry fee is 1 ruble 50 kopecks silver. Children pay half. ”

In Moscow, as elsewhere in the world, Julia was waiting for a resounding success.Fyodor Tyutchev, in a letter to his wife, was indignant at the decline of morals: well, rich Moscow gentlemen paid 200 rubles to this monkey woman just for having lunch with them, and then taking a walk in the park. (To understand: in those years, a ticket to the exhibition of the Wanderers cost 30 kopecks, and for 400 rubles Tretyakov just bought the first picture for the future gallery.)

But glory and happiness did not last long. In 1860 in Moscow, Julia Pastrana gave birth to a child, the same as herself. The kid was less fortunate, and he was able to live only three incomplete days. And Julia herself did not suffer difficult labor and died five days later. She was only 26 years old.

It would seem that her shows and world shows ended with the death of Julia. However, there were people who thought that after the death of Pastrana should be shown to people. Julia's husband found in Moscow Professor Sukolov, who made mummies from Julia and her child. The embalmed bodies were placed in a glass box, and the exhibitions continued. True, Sukolov soon decided to take the mummy to the anatomical museum, but Julia’s husband resisted.


In 1862, on presentation of proper legal marriage documents, Lent won the court.But the authorities have banned him from participating in scientific exhibitions: do not fool your head, boy, yet they understand that you have an ordinary commercial enterprise. Tape later married again, and again at the bearded woman, which gave out for Julia's sister (although, judging by the photo, it was an ordinary European). Then they began to travel around the hailstones and villages - Tape, his current bearded wife, the bodies of the former bearded wife and their common baby, also bearded.

But, apparently, here is the case when the Fraer’s greed has been destroyed. In 1880, in St. Petersburg, Lent was taken to a psychiatric hospital, where he soon died. The property passed the second wife. She took the mummies to Germany, tried to exhibit, but her business did not go. In order not to suffer more, the woman simply sold the exhibits to the person from whom she rented the hall.

For several decades, mummies were forgotten, they reappeared in 1921, in the “Room of Horrors” by the Norwegian Mr. Lund. There they were exhibited until 1970, until the unrest began in Norway. As a result, in the summer of 1976, the furious thugs broke into the “Room of Horrors” warehouse and disfigured the mummy of the child, and the mummy of Julia was stolen. Where it was the next decade is unknown, but in 1990 it was discovered in Oslo, at the Institute of Forensic Medicine.Conversations began that it would be time to stop exposing a woman as an animal for public viewing, but it is necessary to bury her humanly.

In the end, the coffin with the remains of Julia was handed over to the Mexican ambassador in Denmark during a ceremony at Oslo University Hospital and then sent to Mexico. After the Roman Catholic mass in the church of the city of Leyva, the "monkey woman" was buried in the local cemetery to the sounds of national music. Julia Pastrana, who died in 1860, was buried only on February 12, 2013 (after 153 years). Suppose she herself was not beautiful, but her last abode was very beautiful: Julia was placed in a snow-white coffin decorated with delicate white roses and lilies.

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On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

On the face of a terrible, kind inside: the life and death of a bearded Julia, a female monkey from Mexico

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