Julia Pastrana: the story of the bearded woman who became a celebrity

In 1859, an event occurred in Moscow that caused a grandiose scandal and attracted public attention. A world celebrity, a bearded woman named Julia Pastrana, was touring the city. Her arrival caused mixed feelings among the audience: some were surprised and intrigued, others were disgusted and even afraid of Pastrana’s unusual appearance.

Julia Pastrana suffered from a rare endocrine disorder known as “hypertrichosis.” This condition resulted in excessive body hair, as well as hyperplasia of the gums. Julia’s face was covered with thick hair that transitioned into a beard. Her lips were bulging and her gums protruded, showing an irregular double row of teeth. Despite this, Julia had a chiseled figure and graceful movements. She also had a melodious voice and was kind-hearted and cheerful.

Julia Pastrana was born in Mexico in 1834. Her family was a simple peasant family, and Julia grew up as an ordinary girl, mastering literacy and domestic skills. However, her unusual appearance caught the attention of the local governor, who took her into his home. Subsequently, Julia ended up in the United States, where she was re-purchased by Theodore Lent. He began to promote her as a star, teaching her to sing, dance and play musical instruments.

In Moscow, Julia Pastrana performed at various events. She walked around the circus arena, dancing, humming and playing musical instruments. Her performances elicited mixed reactions from the audience: some were amazed and admired her talent, while others were disgusted and felt sorry for her.

Julia Pastrana was pregnant at the time of her arrival in Moscow. This caused additional worries and required monetary resources. The wealthy gentlemen of Moscow paid her a huge sum to dine with them and spend time in the park. This angered Fyodor Tyutchev, who felt that such money could have been spent on more meaningful purposes.

Julia Pastrana’s death caused an even bigger scandal. After her death, her body was handed over to doctors for examination. The examination determined that Julia Pastrana died from complications related to her illness. Her body was put on public display, which sparked outrage and protests. Ultimately, Julia Pastrana’s body was buried in Mexico, where she was born.

The story of Julia Pastrana remains one of the most unusual and moving stories in the entertainment world. Her life and death have been the subject of research and discussion by scholars and experts. She continues to inspire people with her fortitude and example of how to overcome challenges and find her place in the world.

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