The legend of La Llorona is very well know, and it has several variations all around Mexico, Southwest of the USA, Central and South America and Puerto Rico.

La Llorona

It is believed that the origin of this legend comes from the story of teh Aztec Goddess Cihuacoatl or Coatlicue, who appeared near the ocean shortly after Hernan Cortes invaded Mexico. She was weeping for her children, because she knew that the Aztec's empire was near the end.

Another historians says that La Llorona is really the woman called La Malinche, who was Cortes' mistress and translator, but even tho she gave birth to his son, Cortes replaced her with a very rich Spaniard wife. In revenge, Malinche killed the baby.

The version that most people is familiar, and was very common during the Colonial Era, says that there was a beautiful girl whose name was Maria, she lived in a humble village. One day she saw a handsome man riding a horse through the village, and when they both look into each other eyes, felt in love.

After some time, the couple decided to get marry and they had 2 children, but sadly her happiness did not lasted all of her life.

Legend says that one day Maria went to have a walk around the village with her children, when she saw her husband with another woman. That night, full of rage, Maria went to the river and drowned her children, killing herself after.

When Maria appeared at Heaven's gates, she was questioned about the whereabouts of her children, ashamed she replied that she did not know, for this she was refused entrance to Heaven until she brings with her the children.

Poor Maria was forced to be trapped between the living and spiritual worlds,damned for all eternity to look for her children, who are already in Heaven.

Even in these modern days, late at night, people can hear the weep and screams of a woman calling her children: "AY, MIS HIJOS!" (Woe, my children).

Like we said before, this is the most common version of the legend, but there are small variations, depending on the area and the person that tells it:

  • A version says that Maria's lover was a Spaniard, and for this their love was forbidden, even by the Church, so even tho they both had 2 children. Thanks to the pressure of his family, the Spaniard was forced to marry a rich woman, full of sadness, Maria killed herself and her kids in the river.
  • If a person hears her weeping, that person will die.
  • La Llorona kidnaps children that look alike to hers, usually the children and always stay late at night out of her home.
  • One more version says she was jealous of her own children because her husband was paying more attention to the kids than her, and that's why she killed them.
  • She appears at night or late evenings near rivers, lakes or oceans.
  • Some believed that her beauty was taken from her by God and now she has the face of a horse.

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