Morelos (mōrāˈlōs) [key], state (1990 pop. 1,195,059), 1,917 sq mi (4,965 sq km), S Mexico. Cuernavaca is the capital. Morelos is separated from the Federal District and from Mexico state by the east-west volcanic chain crossing central Mexico. Morelos itself is mountainous, with many broad, semiarid valleys in the south. The climate is cold in the mountains and hot in the valleys. Chiefly agricultural, the state grows sugarcane, rice, cereals, tropical fruits, and vegetables. Industrial progress is prevalent; automobile manufacturing is significant, and mining is being developed. The principal towns are Cuernavaca and Cuautla, which is famous for its defense (1812) by José María Morelos y Pavón in the war against Spain. The state, created in 1869, was named in his honor. It is one of Mexico's most densely populated states.