Friday, February 20, 2015

Argentina 2014
Myths and legends - La Flor del Ceibo and El Viento Zonda

 :: THEME: América - UPAEP. Myths and Legends 2014
   :: ISSUE DATE: 30 June 2014
    :: STAMP SIZE: 44mm x 34mm

El Viento Zonda - Zonda Wind

The legend goes that a Huarpe Indian called Gilanco who lived in the Andes was such a great shot with his bow and arrow that he grew a head so big that he upset the gods. One day he went out to play in the wild and slaughtered every animal that wandered into his path with no incentive other than to show off. The god of animal protection, Yastay, got so angry with young Gilanco that he called Pachamama (mother nature) and asked her to punish him. Later that day when Gilanco was back in the village, Pachamama appeared in front of him and all the villagers as a large arrow in the sky and then the arrow splintered into a billion sand pieces which flew in a hot wind around the village, hurting the villagers and Gilanco with a hot dust storm that riddled the settlement for days. This same hot wind, the Zonda, happens again every time someone does something to upset Yastay or hurts animals unnecessarily.

La Flor del Ceibo - Flower of the Ceibo Tree
According to legend, there was once an indigenous woman named Anahí who lived on the shores of the Paraná River. She was small and unsightly, however, her looks were forgotten on summer nights when she came to sing with her beautiful voice to her tribe about their gods and the love of their land. When the conquistadors came to conquer the land, they took Anahí and others from her tribe as prisoners. One night, the guard of her cell fell asleep and Anahí saw a chance of escaping. The guard, however, woke up just as she was getting away and so she stabbed him. 
His dying holler startled the rest of the soldiers and Anahí was unable to escape. Her punishment for killing the man was to burn at the stake. On the night of her sentence, she was tied to a tree and a fire was lit. The flames quickly caught on and the indigenous woman began to sing to her land and her nature. The following morning, the soldiers stood astounded at the spot of her death. In place of the ashes they had expected to find, there was a blooming Ceibo tree showing off its splendorous red flowers.

Stamp images thanks to Correo Argentino
Correo Argentino