During the slave trade, the Yoruba of southwestern Nigeria who were bought to Cuba were forbidden the practice of their religion by their spanish masters. In order to continue their magical and religious observances safely the slaves opted for the identification and disguise of the Orishas with some of the Catholic Saints worshipped by the Spaniards. In this manner they were able to worship their deities under the very noses of the Spaniards without danger of punishment.
The purpose of this book is to present the major Orishas of Santeria in their syncretic identifications with some of the Catholic Saints. The book has been divided into sections each dealing with a specific Orisha, the attributes, paths or aspects, necklaces, initiations, foods, herbs, legends, ebbos, and other pertinent information about the particular deity. This allows the reader to glean as much data as possible about each Orisha in capsule form.