CHINESE MYTHOLOGY

The Gods and Spirits of the Middle Kingdom...

SHEN-NONG

Chinese Agriculture God

Also known as SHEN-NUNG, SHEN-NONG-SHI, YAN-DI, SHENG-NONG, SHENG-NUNG

God of Plants, Agriculture and Herbal Medicine

The second of the SAN-HUANG to rule over China, SHEN-NONG was a mortal in the very earliest days of China (2800 B.C.). Announcing himself ‘Lord of the Burning Wind’, his slash-and-burn policy of clearing scrublands left the ground rich in potash ready for plowing and planting. He then taught his fellow mortals how to farm, and became known as the Holy Plowman King.

But he’s best known for his knowledge of herbs, drugs and medicine. He single-handedly tasted each and every plant in China to see what was yummy and what would kill you. Legend tells that during his research he was once poisoned no less than seventy-two times in a single day. Amazingly, he suffered no long-term ill effects. Perhaps the medicinal plants and poisonous plants canceled each other out.

Apart from that, he has a transparent stomach, which did come in very handy for seeing what all those plants were doing to his insides. He also has a head of oxen. Does that mean he had an ox’s head or that he drove oxen? Or even that he drank Oxo? It is all very garbled.

He married SIEN-TSANG, possibly had a son called QI-YU, and then the computer crashed and lost all our notes. We shall return in due course.

SHEN-NONG FACTS AND FIGURES

Name : SHEN-NONG
Location : China
Gender : Male
Type : deity
In charge of : Agriculture and Farming
Celebration or Feast Day : Unknown at present
Good/Evil Rating : Unknown at present
Pronunciation : Sshun Norng
Alternative names : SHEN-NUNG, SHEN-NONG-SHI, YAN-DI, SHENG-NONG, SHENG-NUNG
Popularity index : 7782
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Article last updated on 18 October 2013 by Rowan Allen.

Editors: Peter J Allen, Chas Saunders

References: Coming soon.

Cite this article:

Saunders, Chas, and Peter J. Allen, eds. "SHEN-NONG: God of Farming from Chinese mythology." Godchecker. Godchecker/CID, 18 Oct. 2013. Web. 22 August 2014.

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