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The Virgin of Guadalupe is one of the strongest Mexican iconic figures post Conquest. According to tradition, on December 9, 1531 Juan Diego, a simple indigenous peasant, had a vision of a young woman while he was on a hill near Mexico City.

The lady told him to build a church exactly on the spot where they were standing. He told the local bishop, who asked for some proof. He went back and had the vision again. He told the lady that the bishop wanted proof, and she said Bring the roses behind you.

Turning to look, he found a rose bush growing behind him. He cut the roses, placed them in his poncho and returned to the bishop, saying he had brought proof.

When he opened his poncho, instead of roses, there was an image of the young lady in the vision. Today, the icon is displayed in the nearby Basilica of Guadalupe now one of the most visited Catholic shrines in the world.

Artists of all kinds in México recreate this image which takes many forms and shapes.

**Click once on the Image for the enlargement.

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