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"Sleeping Woman"
by: Rick Parrott, MCP
Throughout the world there are certain constants that thread through mythology. Enduring love is one of the most popular.

Iztaccihuatl was the daughter of a great Aztec ruler in Mexico. She fell in love with Popocatepetl, one of her father's warriors.

When her father learned of their relationship, he sent her lover away to war in Oaxaca. Iztaccihuatl’s father told the young man, if he survived and returned he could take his daughter as his wife. Unfortunately, the devious emperor never intended for the young warrior to return and planned to marry Iztaccihuatl to another.

While Popocatepetl was away fighting, Iztaccihuatl was told he was dead. Her grief was so consuming she died of a broken heart. When Popocatepetl returned and discovered her death, he took Iztaccihuatl's body in his arms and carried her to the mountains.

Once there he placed her down on the ground and kneeling beside her died of grief. Taking pity, the gods covered them with a blanket of snow and transformed them into great mountains.

Today Iztaccihuatl is known as the "Sleeping Woman", because the mountain appears to be a woman lying on her side. The young warrior became Popocatepetl, or "Smoking Mountain", the volcano that still morns for the death of his lover.

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