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For the state in Nigeria, see Osun State.
Honored in
Yoruba religion, Santería, Candomblé, Folk Catholicism
Attributes yellow, metal brass, peacock feathers, mirrors, honey,
Patronage love, marriage,beauty, rivers
One of some 40 shrines to Oshun in the Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove.

Oshun (known as Ochún or Oxúm in Latin America) is an Orisha. She reigns over love, intimacy, beauty, marriage, wealth, and diplomacy.[1] She is syncretized with Our Lady of Charity. Oshun is beneficent, generous, and very kind. She does, however, have a horrific temper, one which she seldom ever loses. When she does, it causes untold destruction. Oshun is said to have gone to a drum festival one day and to have fallen in love with Shango. Since that day, Shango has been married to Oba, Oya, and Oshun, though Oshun is said to be considered his principal wife.[2]


In Santería, Oshun has many paths. Some of these include:

  • Oshun Ibu Ikole—Oshun the Vulture. This Oshun is associated with Witches, and her symbols are the vulture, and the mortar and pestle (both of which are symbols of witchcraft). This Oshun saved the world by flying the prayers of the dying world up to the Sun, where Olodumare lives.
  • Oshun Ibu Anya—Oshun of the Drums. This Oshun is the patron of dancing and the Anya drums. She is said to dance ceaselessly to forget her troubles.
  • Oshun Ibu Yumu—This Oshun is the eldest Oshun. She sits at the bottom of the river, knitting.
  • Oshun Ibu D'Oko—Oshun, the wife of Oko. This Oshun is pictured as a furrow to be plowed and a giant vulva, while her husband Orisha Oko is a farmer and pictured as a giant phallus. This is one of Oshun's most obviously procreative manifestations.
  • Oshun Ololodi—Oshun, the diviner. This Oshun is the wife of Orunmila, the Orisha of Ifá divination.


Akalatunde, Osunyemi, Ona Agbani-The Ancient Path, create space, 2005


  1. ^ Thompson, Robert Farris. (1983) Flash of the Spirit. New York: Vintage Books. p 79
  2. ^ Matory, J. Lorand. (2005) Sex and the Empire that is No More. New York: Berghahn Books. p xxvi

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