Zulu mythology contains numerous deities, commonly associated with animals or general classes of natural phenomena. Unkulunkulu is the highest God and is the creator of humanity. Unkulunkulu ("the greatest one") was created in Uhlanga , a huge swamp of reeds, before he came to Earth. Unkulunkulu is sometimes conflated with the Sky Father Umvelinqangi (meaning "He who was in the very beginning"), god of thunder and earthquakes.
Other deities include Mamlambo, a snake like the Lamia the goddess of rivers, and Nomkhumbulwane, sometimes called the Zulu Demeter, who is a goddess of the rainbow, agriculture, rain and beer (which she invented).
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