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'Ape woman' Julia Pasterna's mummified remains finally returned to Mexico
[Image: julia_pastrana_bear_woman_apewaman_small.jpg]

The remains of Julia Pastrana, an indigenous Mexican woman who was paraded in fairs and circuses as the "ape woman" in 19th century Europe, have returned home from Norway 153 years after her death.

Pastrana suffered from a rare disease - congenital generalized hypertrichosis terminalis, or CGHT - that covered her face and body with thick hair and gave her fat lips and gums.

Born in 1834 and measuring four feet, five inches, she had a gift for dancing and singing and was brought to Europe by an American businessman Theodore Lent, who she later married, to be shown in circuses and fairs.

She died in 1860 five days after giving birth to her only child, who also died, and her mummified body was acquired in 1921 by a Norwegian show promoter who displayed her remains in "freak" shows until outcry arose over a proposed tour to the US. The remains were then removed from public view.

Her remains were handed to the University of Oslo in 1996. Recently, authorities in her home state of Sinaloa, in northwestern Mexico, have demanded that her remains be returned home.

A Mexican foreign ministry official said the body was already in Mexico and would be sent to Sinaloa for a proper burial on Thursday.
Más vale pocos pelos, pero bien peinados.


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