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Attributes of Ochún
Colours yellow
numbers 5
weekday Saturday
Natural element Freshwater
Nature manifestation Lakes, rivers, waterfalls
plants Ocimum basilicum , Mentha citrata , Hyptis suaveolens , Amaranthus viridis , Eichhornia crassipes , Pilea microphylla , Piper cubeba
Cowrie shell Odi (7 open, 9 closed), Oxé (5 open, 11 closed)
eat Ipeté
Sacrificial animal Chicken, pigeon, goat, turtle

Oshun (Ọṣun, Ochún, Oshún, Òsun, Osun, Oxum) is Aphrodite in the religion of the Yoruba and in the Brazilian Candomblé , the Venus among the Orishas or Orixás .

In Africa

She is a river goddess of the river Oshun in Nigeria and symbolizes fertility.

Their grove in Oshogbo (Oṣogbo) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site . The Osun Festival is celebrated there every year with worldwide resonance.

In the Americas

Oxum is the Iabá (a female orisha ) of love, beauty, femininity, material wealth and fertility.

For the followers of the Brazilian Candomblé she is considered the goddess of rivers, waterfalls and lakes, of beauty, love and wealth. Although she is considered the most meek of all Orixá, she is the leader among all female deities, a Ìyàmi Òşòròngà (sorceress) and the only one who is allowed to participate in the shell-throwing of the male deities.


Without their help there is no life on earth. The legend Oxum makes women sterile as blackmail against men / Oxum faz as mulheres estéreis em respresália aos homens reports that it made women on earth sterile because the male Orixás wanted to exclude them from power:

“As soon as the world was created, all Orixás came to earth and began to distribute decisions among themselves about the division of tasks on earth, in which only men were allowed to participate. Oxum did not accept this situation. She rebelled against the exclusion, she took revenge on the male Orixás. She condemned all women to sterility. […] They were very alarmed and did not know what to do without sons to grow up, nor heirs to leave them possessions, without new arms to create new riches and wage wars, and without descendants to keep the memories of them not to let them die. "

Oxum is - depending on the legend, told differently - the daughter of Oxalá , the sister of Obá , married to Xangô , Oxóssi and Ogum and has a son, Logum Edé .


Since her element is gold, she wears yellow.

In the Afro-Cuban Santería , Oshun corresponds to the Virgin Mary in the form of the Blessed Virgin of Cobre, the patron saint of Cuba. In Brazil, too, she is often assigned to the Virgin Mary within the framework of syncretism .


Oxum always appears in the company of Yemayá and is particularly helpful for pregnant women and women in labor. Oxum is characterized by its beauty, its beautiful body and has many lovers, as it is reported in the legend Oxum becomes poor out of love for Xangô / Oxum fica pobre por amor a Xangô :

“She had a beautiful body, of fine shape. […] Many nights Oxum had lovers in her bed, to whom she brought moments of seldom pleasure. Oxum had a lot of love affairs. "

The consecrated to Oxum are gentle, flirtatious, vain, jealous, and ambitious. In many legends she is also described as underhanded, especially with other women.


  • G. Olusola Ajibade: Negociating Performance: Osun in the Verbal and Visual Metaphors . Working Papers, Bayreuth 2005.
  • Gisèle Omindarewá Cossard: Awô. O mistério dos Orixás . Rio de Janeiro 2008 (2006).
  • Joseph M. Murphy, Mei-Mei Sanford: Osun Across the Waters: A Yoruba Goddess in Africa and the Americas . Indiana 2001.
  • Reginaldo Prandi: Oxum . In: Mitologia dos Orixás. São Paulo 2001, pp. 318-345.
  • Peter Probst: Oshogbo and the Art of Heritage . Bloomington 2011.
  • Miguel A. de la Torre: Dancing with Ochún: Imagining How a Black Goddess Became White . In: Anthony Pinn (Ed.): Aesthetics within Black Religion: Religious Thought and Life in Africa and the African Diaspora . New York 2009, pp. 113-134.
  • Pierre Verger: Orixás. Os Deuses iorubás na Africa e no Novo Mundo . Sao Paulo 1981.
  • Esplendor e decadência do culto de Ìyàmi Osorongà entre os Iorubas (minha mãe feiticeira) . In: Artigos , Tomo I, São Paulo 1992, pp. 8-91.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Cossard, 2008, p. 139.
  2. ^ Cossard, 2008, p. 86.
  3. Cossard, 2008, p. 108 f.
  4. UNESCO World Heritage: Grove of the Osun (English)
  5. “Olodumare gave Oxum the splendor of femininity, material wealth and fertility of women. Gave her love. / Olodumare deu a Oxum o zelo pela feminilidade, riqueza material e fertilidade das mulheres. Deu a Oxum o amor “, told in the legend Iemanjá heals Oxalá and receives power over the heads / Iemanjá cura Oxalá e ganha o poder sobre as cabeças, cf. Reginaldo Prandi, 2001, p. 398.
  6. Verger, 1992.
  7. "Logo que o mundo foi criado, todos os orixás vieram para a Terra e começaram a tomar decisões e dividir encargos entre eles, em concibiliábulos nos quais somente os homens podiam participar. Oxum not se conformava com essa situação. Resentida pela exclusão, ela vingou-se dos orixás masculinos. Condenou todas as mulheres à esterilidade. [...] Estavam muito alarmados e haben sabiam o que fazer sem filhos para criar nem herdeiros para quem deixar suas posses, sem novos braços para criar novas riquezas e fazer as guerras e sem descendentes para haben deixar morrer suas memórias, "cf. Reginaldo Prandi, 2001, p. 345.
  8. "Tinha to corpo belo, de formas finas. […] Por muitas noites Oxum teve em seu leito amantes, aos quais propiciava momentos de raro prazer. Oxum teve muitos amores, “cf. Reginaldo Prandi, 2001, p. 335.
  9. “Oxum lived in the palace of Ijimu. She spent her days looking at her reflection in the mirror. / Vivia Oxum no palácio de Ijimu. Passava os dias no seu quarto olhando seus espelhos ”, told in the legend Oxum Apará is jealous of Oiá / Oxum Apará tem inveja de Oiá, cf. Reginaldo Prandi, 2001, p. 323.
  10. Reginaldo Prandi, 2001, p. 324.