Odd Job Gods

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Meet Skadi, goddess of... skiing. No, she is not made up. Seriously.

"They invaded Greece and conquered them and and stole all their gods and renamed them with Roman names. Cause the Roman gods before that were kind of crap, you know, Jeff, the god of biscuits. And Simon, the god of hairdos. And uh, you know, they had the god of war, the god of thunder, the god of running around and jumping and stuff."

Eddie Izzard, Dress to Kill

It is good to be a god, isn't it? You can rule whatever you want inside your area of expertise, spend all day floating around the clouds or hang around with your followers. As long as people believe in you, everything is fine...

Well, not quite. You see, as cool as it is to be Patron Saint of Soldiers, the god of Thunder or the demonic representation of lust, not everyone in the Celestial Bureaucracy can be bosses. Some mythologies decide to tie up the loose ends and lump in minor responsibilities with the major, producing gods with an oddly erratic remit.

That is when the Odd Job Gods start to act.

Sometimes averted by giving your existing gods additional domains, though that way you end up with gods of, say, mountains, earthquakes and apples. Also, while most of these domains may seem unimpressive when taken at face value, it could be highly symbolic or more complex. Regardless of the complexities of their powers, it still would not be a good idea to tease them about it. Not to be confused with, though sometimes goes with, God Job. See also Painting the Frost on Windows and Magical Underpinnings of Reality.

Examples of Odd Job Gods include:

Anime and Manga


"Not all gods are powerful and dangerous, you know. Like the god of being poor."[1]

  • In Kamichu!, a very shinto-derived series, you even see gods for empty aluminum cans, ice cream bars, and cheap grocery store mascots. And the god of being poor.
  • Some of the Legendary Pokémon can be pretty weird when compared to the others. Like, Arceus is a Creator Deity, Lugia is a god of the sea, Palkia and Dialga control Time and Space, and then there's Hoopa who... Creates magical hoops. Yeah. Even admitted Caustic Critic PhantomStrider doesn't pull punches in his review here, bluntly stating that "Hoopa is a stupid Legendary."

Comic Books

  • Vext was a short-lived series from DC Comics about the God of Mishap and Misfortune. It included a number of other small-time godlings, including the deities of uninvited guests, relationships gone hellishly wrong, incessant nagging, and ill-timed flatulence.
  • In PS238, there's a goddess in the Rainmaker Program (where superkids whose powers don't exactly lend themselves to fighting crime learn to use them in other ways). It's the Greek Hestia, goddess of the hearth. They're thinking advice columnist, fertility clinician, marriage counselor... just don't come in uninvited.
  • In Sandman we meet Pharamond, from the Babylonian pantheon, who is now "in charge of transportation." He appears to be more or less a travel agent for the puissant.
    • He, in fact, managed a massive transportation firm.
    • With the fringe benefit of being able to count road traffic deaths as sacrifices in his name. He was quite happy with his new place in the order of things.
  • In Lucifer we are given Mona, Goddess of Hedgehogs (a job she chose in order to avoid taking on too much responsibility). The only other god in her universe is Elaine, Goddess of everything except hedgehogs.
  • A Donald Duck comic featured him taking odd jobs as the god of, among other things, cars and television. He managed to botch the job so badly he sent Duckburg's technical prowess back to the 17th century.


  • Spinal Tap's David St. Hubbins' surname is derived from the patron saint of quality footwear.
    • Note that the actual saints of footwear are the duo Crispin and Crispinian. Yeah, there are patron saints for everything, see below.
  • In the short film A Case of Spring Fever, our protagonist encounters Coily the Spring Sprite, a seemingly-omnipotent being (or at least a high-powered Reality Warper) that has an odd preoccupation with springs.


  • Neil Gaiman's American Gods:
  • Discworld has, among other things:
    • Aniger, the minor goddess of squashed animals (growing in power as carts get faster and roads get smoother and more people cry out, "Oh gods, what was that I hit?!"), possibly connected to Herne The Hunted, God of things destined to live short lives ending in a crunch.
    • Anoia, minor goddess of Things That Get Stuck in Drawers formerly a volcano goddess...who is heading up; she's currently tapped to be the new Goddess of Lost Causes, a growth industry on the Disc.
    • Bilious, the oh God of Hangovers, whose newfound existence allows the God of Wine to drink as much as he likes and never get a hangover (and incidentally allows humans with the same trait to do it too) eventually decides to do freelance godding for any gods that want to take a break.
    • Errata, the Goddess of Misunderstandings (from Discworld Noir), famous for having the largest number of followers who, by mistake, follow a different god.
    • The heroic dog who stole the Tsortian Falchion and became the god of Unnecessary Subplots In Legends.
    • Nuggan, the recently deceased God of Paperclips, Correct Things in the Right Place in Small Desk Stationery Sets, and Unnecessary Paperwork
    • The God of Evolution. Who is an atheist.
    • Bastet, god of things left on the doorstep, things half-digested under the bed, and computers that cheat at Tetris.
      • This may be a digression, but this character is a cat goddess from the Real Life Ancient Egyptian mythological pantheon. The cat part may explain the things left on the doorstep and half-digested under the bed.
    • And also the Hogfather, the god of Hogswatch. Oh, and the sunrise.
    • And that's just in the mainstream pantheon. Don't even mention oddballs like Ptang-Ptang and Quetzovercoatl ... or even think about Djelibeybi.
    • Lampshaded in Mort, when Cutwell, trying to get the coronation done as fast as possible before reality collapses in on itself, realises to his horor that the officiating priest is going to name all 900 known gods. He's got as far as Steikhegel, God of Isolated Cow Byres before someone stops him.
    • Another Lampshading in Small Gods, where Om mentions there's a God of Cabbage. Thunder gods may come and go, but when there's an attack of caterpillars, who does everyone turn to?
    • And in Reaper Man, when we get Hughnon Ridcully's delightful summation of events in Cori Celesti...
    • Small gods are what are created when random events occur (eg two snails crossing paths, or someone catching a dropped pen etc).
    • Played with when the Oh God of Hangovers decides to become sort of relief for other gods, temporarily taking over for them when they want a holiday, and sort of inverted when there's mention of a freelance priestess (no mention of how she does business; maybe Anoia pays her in cutlery?)
  • Saint Vidicon of Cathode on Warlock of Gramaraye series by Christopher Stasheff. The patron saint of technicians and engineers. Saint Vidicon's symbol is a yellow screwdriver worn in the shirt pocket. In a later book, his history was revealed - he was martyred when he used his body to close an electrical circuit, allowing a speech by the Pope to make it to air and save the Catholic Church from obsolescence.
  • L Sprague De Camp's short story "The Hardwood Pile" features Aceria, the one of the Tree Nymphs of Norway Maples. After all the Norway Maples in the area are cut down she becomes the Nymph of Piles of Wooden Boards that Used to Be Norway Maples. At the end of the story she becomes the Nymph of Nightclub Dance Floors Made of Wood From Norway Maples.
  • The Bastard from the Chalion series. The only god not associated with a season, his domain is all things out of place: demons, children born out of wedlock (obviously), odd loves, disasters, and unorthodox justice. He also takes the souls of those not devoted to any of the other gods.
  • In the Forgotten Realms crossover Finder's Bane, a god residing outside the Realms (which has, or used to have, Loads And Loads Of Gods) comments that "We wouldn't be surprised to find they have a god there with dominion over the tableware and ale mugs."
  • Tortall Universe: Tamora Pierce's series of books set in universe has the big gods, like Mithros (war and justice), and the Goddess (fertility, women, agriculture), but it also has minor gods like Weiryn (god of the hunt for a small mountainous area), and rather hilariously a god of crossroads, not a god of travelers, just a god of actual crossroads.
    • That's not funny, that's perfectly sensible. Crossroads are mystically heavy hitters; the loa Legba has dominion over them in voudoun.
  • Glen Cook's Garrett P.I., while he doesn't believe in gods until he's actually hired by some of them, is a Deadpan Snarker with a personal Running Gag about how the Butt Monkey Odd Job godling who passes out towels in the heavenly loo has a secondary job: messing with Garrett's life.
  • In Journey to the West, Son Wukong (who regularly trounces the gods in hand-to-hand combat) gets the job of Celestial Stable Boy to placate his ambitions, but that just ends up kicking off an even worse Rage Against the Heavens. (It does end up being a useful item in his resume later on, though, as all horses, regular and supernatural, hold him in awe as a result.)
  • The Liavek anthologies had Bree Amal, Goddess of Keepers of Disorderly Houses, and Ghologhosh, god of unmeant curses.
  • Split Heirs by Lawrence Watt-Evans give us a God of Misused Things.
    • Which might be extremely influential nowadays.
  • In Barry Hughart's The Chronicles of Master Li and Number Ten Ox, Master Li has to appeal to Heaven to replace the lost patroness of prostitutes; a prostitute discusses the possibilities with him.
  • Mentioned in passing to convey Aerin's experience climbing the apparently perpetual tower to the Final Boss Battle toward the end of The Hero and The Crown; she concludes she has been climbing forever, and will be climbing forever, and might become a sort of minor god, the God Who Climbs, comparable apparently to the 'God Who Isn't There,' which is the shadow god at noon.

Live Action TV

Newspaper Comics

  • Dilbert
    • The Demon of Demos.
    • Phil, the Prince of Insufficient Light, the ruler of Lower Heck. He punishes people (usually Dilbert) for minor infractions not worthy of damnation in hell, such as using copier paper for the printer or stealing a chair from another cubicle.
    • Thor appears to Dogbert offering him a job as one of these, promising further career advancement (Thor himself claims to have started out as the God of Static Cling). Dogbert then accepts the position of "God of Velcro". And he signed Dilbert up for the God of Mayonnaise.

Stand Up Comedy

  • Eddie Izzard did a bit about the influence of the Greek gods on the Romans, saying that originally the Romans had rather crap gods such as Jeff the God of Biscuits, and Simon the God of Hairdos.

Tabletop Games

  • In Nomine: Steve Jackson Games' English language version had a number of demons and angels with rather odd Words (areas of influence), and the rulebook gives a GM the ability to assign these to player characters. Some examples:
    • Caliban, the Demon of Anorexia
    • Maigonigal, the Demon of Bad Art
    • Tomas, the Angel of Catchy Tunes
    • Zuheyr, the Angel of Cleanliness
    • Connor, the Angel of Cooking
    • Randolph, the Angel of Dictionaries
    • Fleurity, the Demon Prince of Drugs
    • Stander, the Demon of Embalming
    • Karne, the Demon of Fast Food
    • Imbap, the Demon of Stale Bong Water, who serves as an object lesson to Demons: Don't pester Lucifer for a Word because he may just give you one.
  • In the tabletop RPG Exalted, everything has a god. Everything. From concepts like love, taxes, and urban metropolises, to physical places and objects like crop fields and even individual rocks. Generally speaking, gods of concepts and abstracts outrank those of concrete things and places. Gods of thing smaller than say, a large building, tend to not be sentient.
    • One of the sentient and powerful ones is Nice Guy Nara-O. His title is officially "God Of Secrets Known To Only One", and has a cool appearance to match that title. Now, ask yourself-what are the kind of secrets you don't want to tell others, for their sake? One imagines the other gods have a betting pool on how much Brain Bleach in gallons he buys every other day.
      • Of course, if he personally knows all the secrets otherwise only known to one other individual, wouldn't that actually make him the "God Of Secrets Known To Only Two"?
    • One artifact from a splatbook is a prayer stone keyed to one specific goddess, whose entire purpose is to receive and relay messages made on this stone. She is immensely reliable because she's that desperate to have something to do. Not to mention that the stone has been lost since the Golden Age, making for one terminally bored goddess.
  • Dungeons & Dragons has quite a few:
    • In Greyhawk:
    • In Mystara:
      • Buglore, the god of insects.
      • Technically, Mystara has Immortals rather than gods. Lots and lots of Immortals, some of which would think "god of insects" was the big time.
  • In Paizo Publishing's D&D 3.5-edition retro-clone game Pathfinder meta-setting:
    • Alseta, goddess of doorways.
    • Ghlaunder, god of insects and parasites.
    • Zarongel, goblin god of dog-killing, fire, and mounted combat.
  • In the Warhammer Fantasy Battle Fantasy universe, there's Necoho, the god of atheism. He gets more powerful as he loses followers.
  • Warhammer 40,000 has the two ork gods Mork (who is cunningly brutal) and Gork (who is brutally cunning). Or was it the other way around?
  • This is sort of the whole point of Nobilis, where your character is essentially one of these. Your character might literally be the Power of Friendship. On the other hand, she might also be the Power of Lipton Instant Noodles (an example from the book). The difference in power and prestige between these is less than one might think- or may not necessarily even go in the direction one might think.
  • Magic: The Gathering: In the Kamigawa block, the short version of the story is that the Gods are pissed, and out of bubblegum. The set's flavor was influenced by Shinto, so there are Kami for everything, from Cleansing Fire and Infinite Rage to... Pus and Painted Roads.
  • The Primal Order, by Wizards of the Coast, is a sourcebook full of ideas and rules on how to handle deity-level action in fantasy games. Their two "official" example deities? The Hawaiian volcano goddess Pele... and Joey, God of Basketweaving.

Video Games

  • The Elder Gods of Lusternia were divided into seven pantheons which dictated their roles. However, some Gods were massively more important in their pantheons than others. After all, what sounds more impressive - the Seventh Circle creator who birthed the noble race of stags, or the Seventh Circle creator responsible for the genesis of fleas?
    • Well, fleas were the bringers of the Black Death...
  • In The Elder Scrolls you can find along the many pantheons Stuhn (God of Ransom).
  • Most of the gods of City of Heroes were pretty powerful, but that doesn't stop a djinn from existing solely to keep an eye on four enchanted mantles or prevent a wide array of quickly forgotten gods from running around. Trapdoor is essentially the god of running away, and the Furies are exactly what you'd expect. Lord Recluse seems to be the god of spiders, while Statesman seems to be the God of Superheroes.
    • And then it became possible for player characters to snatch a little divine power for themselves, without having to declare what they were now (incredibly weak and minor) gods of.
  • In the Disgaea series, any item can be entered like a dungeon; (this is called an Item World.) If that item has a "legendary" trait; then this Item World is 100 levels deep. It has generals, kings, and at the end of level 100; an item god. You are encouraged to go through these and kill them all; as it powers that item up for you. So you can kill the Item God of a sword, piece of armor, used piece of chewing gum, detached horse penis...
  • Okami features gods of assorted elements, rejuvenation, explosions, cutting, the Sun and Moon, and Kabegami, the god of walls. The game is based on Shinto, which has rather a lot of gods. When one wishes to refer to all of the Shinto gods collectively in Japanese, one speaks of "the eight million gods".[2]
  • Touhou Project's Gensokyo, being a Fantasy Kitchen Sink, with a sizable emphasis on Shintoism, has a number of low-power goddesses. Including Shizuha, the goddess of dead leaves.
  • Shin Megami Tensei games features numerous Odd Job Gods as regular encounters and occasionally boss fights. Special mention goes out to Strange Journey, with Kanbari, the god of toilets. Devil Summoner: Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon has more than a few of its own; early on, you get cursed with bad luck, and are assaulted by Binbou-gami, the god of poverty, who takes the form of a man hanging upside-down from a cloud raining coins from his shirt. Most of his attacks involve giant coins landing on top of you, too. Other strange gods include the above-mentioned Pele and fellow Hawaiian deity Kamapua'a (a hog-man), and Taoist god Neko Shogun.
    • Others include, but are not limited to: Kudan, a human-headed cow that is born to issue a single prophecy of disaster and then dies, the Hare of Inaba, who was skinned for his insolence, Mamedanuki, a sort of raccoon dog capable of transforming its scrotum into useful objects, and hell, even the friggin' Chupacabra.
  • Jade Empire features a Celestial Bureaucracy that tracks the actions of the heroes. At one point, a god appears to you and chews you out for wreaking so much destruction; his job was to tabulate your karma, and he was so ill-suited for the task he was demoted. So now he sells you trinkets.
  • In the Roguelike Dungeon Crawl, you can choose to worship one of your standard gods of magic, war, death, growth, healing, good, evil, etc. You can also worship Jiyva, god of slimes [3] and Cheibriados, god of slowness.[4]
  • The procedurally generated deities of Dwarf Fortress sometimes fall into this. The game may, for instance, generate a god of salt. Sometimes these deities can get Flight, Strength, Heart as well; it's perfectly plausible to find a god of death, war, murder and... rainbows.
  • Acceleration of Suguri has QP, whom is the goddess of pudding.
  • RuneScape has Brassica Prime, the cabbage god of cabbages.
  • The fal'Cie of Final Fantasy XIII. Sure, you had fal'Cie who did important things like producing food or acting as the sun. But some fal'Cie had less important tasks like... operating automatic doors.
  • In Dungeons of Dredmor, you can get a Sidequest to earn a random piece of magic equipment by praying to Inconsequentia, Goddess of Pointless Sidequests. You can also leave offerings of lutefisk to shrines of the Lutefisk God, who will offer a magic item if you bring him enough.
  • In the Battle for Azeroth expansion of World of Warcraft, you will eventually come across Jani, a powerful loa who claims to be "da Patron of Scavengers, da Lord of Thieves, da God of Garbage, Master of Minions, and da Keeper of Secrets." She also has a far-less approachable enemy, who is a goddess of spiders.
  • In Final Fantasy VII, the Fat Chocobo is a Ritual entity associated with Fertility and Luck; it's also a huge, giant chicken. After you defeat it in the VR simulation (which gives you the ability to Summon it) Chadley remarks that this creature is proof that the Powers That Be have a sense of humor.


Web Original

  • The Divine Census of Cedrism includes such oddities as B'Caw, God of Spicy Chicken, and Mog, God of Political Blunders. Even the relatively normal gods have bizarre sides (the god of warriors and soldiers is also the patron god of "guys with long hair")
  • In the French site ASP explorer, in a series of short stories parodying the adventures of Conan, we are introduced to a newly ascended goddess:

"Mranis actually was a rather careless deity. In front of Divine Agora, summoned to choose her divine attributes, symbols and titles, as it is the custom for the gods, she had chosen, to her peers great consternation, the Small Burin of the Patient Excavations, the Half Extincy Torch of Dark Illuminations, her red and black half skinned cat named "Touminou", and her complete name was written, as the custom wants, on the titanic porphyre steps of the Great Cenotaph: "Mranis, funny little goddess of violence, destruction, sex, scientific research and the other funny stuff ". Mesculias, god of chance and destiny, bet two major temples and twelve thousand minions against a mouldy baguette that she never would find any believers with such a manifest. Nobody among heavenly assembly raised the bet."

  • And this allows you to generate such gods.

Western Animation

  • One of the most powerful characters in The Tick is The Mighty Agrippa, Roman God of the Aqueduct. According to the series canon, he was the last god to join the Roman Pantheon; but when he showed up the rest had left for another planet. Despite being a low-ranking god, he's still a Physical God and one of the strongest beings in the series.
  • On Sam and Max Freelance Police, after the titular duo get Zeus and Juno back together in the episode "Dysfunction of the Gods", they are rewarded by becoming the God of Junk Food and the God of Vulgar Novelty Items respectively.
  • In the Earthworm Jim episode "Assault and Battery", Jim goes to the Fabled, Long-Sought Home of the Gods to receive a new battery for his supersuit. There, he meets the gods of nasal discharge and puns, and the goddess of disco, who explain that the biggies are at a party in Valhalla.
  • A very early episode of Beavis and Butthead had the boys meet up with Sterculius, the God of Feces at a monster truck show. He was not made up for the show, either.

Real Life

  • Ancient Egypt had household gods that were pretty much like this. Given the sheer size of their pantheon, it's no wonder that the ancient Egyptians had a lot of these, including:
    • Nefertem, the god of the sunrise and the morning sun, but also perfumes and lilies.
    • Iabet, the goddess of the east.
    • Sopedu, the god of the east.
    • Hu, the god of the voice of authority.
    • Seker, the god of the necropolis of Memphis, and of the craftsmen who built tombs there.
    • Mafdet, the goddess who protects people from snakes and scorpions.
    • Tayet, the goddess of weaving and mummy bandages.
    • Satet, the goddess of the south and the annual Nile flood (a phenomenon essential to Egyptian life).
    • Ihy, the god of music and beer.
      • They really do go together, though.
    • Shay, the god of destiny.
    • Qadesh, the goddess of ecstasy. (originally a Syrian goddess)
  • Ancient Rome had them too. They were called lares, and most houses had a small shrine called a lararium. For ordinary Romans, they were typically the most important gods, as well.
  • Catholicism has a long tradition of appointing Saints with job descriptions often based on what they did in real life. In many cultures syncretism has taken this to extremes, with local deities assuming the personality of saints, and vice versa. Including one of whom we should take note: St. Clare of Assisi, the Patron Saint of Television.
    • Even more so - St. Nicholas is the patron saint of, basically, everyone. (The list includes children, sailors, fishermen, merchants, the falsely accused, prostitutes, repentant thieves, pharmacists, archers, and pawnbrokers.) If you are ever unsure of which Christian saint to pray to, just use him.
    • Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini, the first U.S. citizen to be canonized (a New Yorker, natch) is, according to this humorous site, "official" patron saint of parking spaces. However, St. Therese of Lisieux is listed as a rival there, and this site lists yet others.
    • The Catholic Church also has a habit of just squinting and adding to a popular saint's portfolio if they can vaguely justify the connection. Thus, you have St. Joseph (Jesus' adopted dad) being the patron saint of fathers and social justice (among others), St. Matthew (writer of the first book of the New Testament and a former tax collector) being the patron saint of tax collectors and stock brokers, St. Isidore of Seville (he wrote an encyclopedia in the seventh century) now patron saint of computers and the Internet[5] and St. Thomas Aquinas (noted Catholic theologian) standing for learning but somehow against lightning.
      • And St. Jude (mentioned in the bible as "the apostle called Jude who was not Iscariot") who is, by this sad naming coincidence, now the patron saint of hopeless causes.
      • Also St. Anthony, the patron saint of finding lost things.
      • The winner of this unfortunate competition is probably St. Drogo, patron saint of bodily ills, broken bones, hernias, sick people, insane people, ugly people, orphans, shepherds and coffee shop owners. And no, we're not making that one up.
      • One of the more interesting of them is Joseph of Cupertino, Patron of Astronauts, Aviators and Poor Students. He was kind of an oddity. From all descriptions he was almost certainly autistic and he could not have survived anywhere in 1683 except a palace or a monastery (which is in fact where he grew up). His patronage of Astronauts and Aviators comes from stories that he levitated (Whatever). Actually the poor fellow sounds like a rather miserable boy from all descriptions.
    • In fact, the syncretistic aspect of the Catholic Church's patron saints is what made Vodun and Santeria possible as viable religions — by equating their native pantheon with the saints of the Church, it was possible for Caribbean slaves to keep aspects of their native religions alive in the New World with minimal risk of reprisal from slaveholders.
  • Shinto believes that essentially all items have a spirit or god.
    • Notable, and very popular Shinto deity Inari - god of fertility, industry, success, agriculture, rice and um, foxes. Was the patron kami of blacksmiths and warriors - currently accepted by the cosmetics company Shiseido as their patron kami. Bit of an all-round god.
    • Shin Megami Tensei loves this fact. All the gods listed under their entries in Video Games? Real.
  • Ancient Rome had Cloacina, god of sewers; goddesses of doorways/hinges, menstruation and weeding; and many others. Like rust. Good story here: Cloacina was the goddess of a stream that ran through where Rome is now. Eventually, this stream was paved over and made into the sewer. As a sort of apology and thanks to her, there were lots of little shrines to Cloacina; eventually, she became the general goddess of sewers.
  • Aztec Mythology had a few gods like this. One quite unusual assortment included vanity, fog, and fame, ruled over by Ayauhteotl.
  • Mike Judge didn't make up the Sterculius character mentioned in Western Animation. There actually was a Roman god called Sterquilinus who was God of Manure.
  • Chinese mythology, being a Celestial Bureaucracy, has plenty of these, too, including:
    • the god of oil lamps, who nearly caused The End of the World as We Know It because he wasn't being well cared for or worshiped.
    • the god of ovens, who has the secondary job of spying on the household to report good and bad deeds (and would thus have to be bribed often with sweeties to keep his mouth shut).
    • the god(s) of doorways, occasionally said to be the spirits of ancient fearsome warriors.
  • Pre-islamic Arabia had Wadd, a god of snakes, the Moon and friendship.
  • Not a saint recognized by the Catholic Church, but Jesús Malverde is known as the patron saint of drug trafficking. (Given how profitable the opium trade was during his lifetime, this actually makes sense. Some liken him to the type who was Just Like Robin Hood, but more specialized.)
  • The Greeks liked to append random attributes to Apollo, which eventually made him god of "light and the sun; truth and prophecy; medicine, healing, and plague; music, poetry, and the arts; and more" according to Wikipedia.
    • Hermes was nearly as versatile, being god of messengers, travelers, merchants, thieves, sports, commerce, shepherds, and weights and measures.
    • Most of the major gods get in on the action; Zeus, for instance, was, besides being King of the Gods and god of the sky, the patron of Sacred Hospitality, while Hades served as a god of wealth (hence the Roman name Pluto).
  • Norse Mythology also has a bunch:
    • Bragi, god of poetry
    • Skadi, goddess of skis.
      • Actually, Skadi was the goddess of winter, which included skis.
  • Chinese Mythology has Guan Yu, the God of War, legendary hero, protector of all of China, champion against demons, and once one of the most popular gods among all the classes. He is also the patron god of bean curd (tofu) since before he became a warrior he was a bean curd merchant. More important than it sounds since bean curd has traditionally been an important food in China.
    • China also has Wenchang, Taoist god of literature, writing, and education- and the god you pray to for help passing your exams. Given the importance of the imperial examinations- which determined who got a government job and basically were the only means of social mobility most of the time- it's not that surprising that there was a specific god for it. (In modern times, scallions seem to be a popular offering.)
  • There's also Caïssa, goddess of chess!
  1. Yes, there is such a thing in Japanese folklore. It's called a "binbougami," and versions of this god appear in Kamichu! and Wagaya no Oinari-sama.
  2. And that's not a strict limit, either. "Eight million" is an archaic Japanese euphemism for "a vast, possibly infinite number", the same way forty is used in the Bible.
  3. who only is only worshipped by a single super-intelligent jelly, and, since Gods Need Prayer Badly, if you kill that jelly you actually commit deicide
  4. who is actually something of a Game Breaker, since Heart Is an Awesome Power
  5. Not "officially" (the Holy See has not spoken on the issue), but he was voted as such in an Italian poll