Did she wear a Crown?
Did Our Lady of Guadalupe
wear a crown?
Years ago, on one of the times that I went down
to Mexico, I was directed to a church called San Francisco El Grande in
downtown Mexico City. It is located near the Latin American
This is what I understood from what I was told. In a
side chapel there is a painting done on the desk- or tabletop of Bishop
Zumarraga, the bishop Juan Diego took the flowers to. While there I made
some notes: "In this church is the first copy of the Image of Guadalupe
which was en el escritorio de Obispo Juan Zummarga (my mispelling).
I went on to describe the painting on a large sheet of paper. In notes
around the little rough drawing of her head, I wrote "There are gold rays
around her and what appears to be a crown on her head...The apparent crown
blends with the rays to the point that you might not know it was there."
Elsewhere I'd written "Painted about 427 years ago (more or less)." This
might've been in December of 1989, so this would make it about 1562 when it
was done (more or less), 29 years after the miraculous occurrence.
I've looked at the large image I have, and do not see a crown, but it
appears there could have been some disturbance in that area.
In a booklet I brought home about that church, San Francisco de Mexico
by Fray Fidel de Jesus Chauvet, O.F.M., it says in Spanish:
"La imagen principal de este retablo pertenecio al antiguo templo de San
Francisco, y estaba en un altar lateral dedicado a la Virgen del Tepeyac.
Esta imagen esta pintada sobre las tablas de la mesa del Sr. Arzobispo
Zumarraga, de acuerdo con la inscripcion al pie del cuadro, en su reverso,
en donde se lee:
Tabla de la Mesa del Ilmo. Sr. Zumarraga, y en la que el Dichosos Neofito
Puso la Tilma en que Estaba Estampada esta Maravillosa Imagen."
Translated into English, it
reads: The principal image of this altar piece belongs to the ancient temple
of St. Francis, and was on the side altar dedicated to the Virgin of Tepeyac.
This image is painted upon the boards of the table of Archbishop Zumarraga,
according to an inscription on at the bottom of the painting, on the back,
where you read:
Board of the table of Bishop Zumarraga, on which the fortunate neophyte put
the tilma on which was stamped this marvelous image.
I wanted to photograph those words on the back of the painting but I was not
allowed to. I would've liked independent verification.
There is a lengthy description of her
image in the book called The History of the Apparitions of Our Lady of
Guadalupe written in the Aztec language of Nahautl by
Antonio Valeriano, with additions by Alva Ixtlixochitl, published by
Bachiller Luis Lazo de la Vega and translated into Castillian by Licenciado
Primo Feliciano Velazquez. It says on page 33, "Her head is inclined to the
right; and above the veil is a gold crown whose spindle-shaped points have
Whether the crown was there to begin with, I cannot say, but it was there at
some point in history.
(Note: Valeriano was born about 1531, the year Our
Lady of Guadalupe appeared to Juan Diego, and died 1605.
Fernando Alva Ixtlilxochitl was born between 1568 and 1580, and died in
1648. Luis Lazo de la Vega is the author of Hvei Tlamacoantzin,
published in 1649, a year after Ixtlixochitl's death).