Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Garvey E Lundy
The Fon people constituted the nucleus of the former kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most distinguished kingdoms of the west coast of Africa. Culturally and linguistically, the Fon belong to the Aja group. In the Fon cosmology, Nana Buluku is commonly known as the androgynous deity who represents the “beginning.” Although it is difficult in Dahomean cosmology to speak of one “absolute beginning,” after reference to Nana Buluku has been made to the “beginning,” Nana Buluku does not appear in the story of the “ordering” of the world. Credit for the “ordering” goes to Nana Buluku's progeny, Mawu-Lisa. Indeed, according to Herskovits, there is no specific cult of Nana Buluku in Dahomey, although its preeminence in relation to all deities is recognized. An essential element in Dahomean cosmology is the genealogy of the Vodu (i.e., god ...