In Egyptian mythology, Apis (or Hapis) is a bull-deity. He served as an intermediary between humans and an all-powerful god. The cult of the Apis bull started at the very beginning of Egyptian history, probably as a fertility god connected to grain and the herds. The bull symbolized the king’s courageous heart, great strength, virility, and fighting spirit. The Apis bull was considered to be a manifestation of the pharaoh, as bulls were symbols of strength and fertility, qualities which are closely linked with kingship–for instance, the description “the strong bull of his mother Hathor” was a common title for gods and pharaohs. Apis was pictured with Hathor’s sun-disk between his horns, being one of few deities associated with her symbol.