Babylonian tradition says that there were seven Apkallu who lived at the beginning of time before the flood, and were sent by the god Ea to teach wisdom to humans. By name, they were Adapa (the first man) Uan-dugga, En-me-duga, En-me-galanna, En-me-buluga, An-enlilda and Utu-abzu.
Apkallu protect people and sometimes hold a small, purse-like bucket(with a cone of incense inside) for purifying. In the Babylonian tradition, the Apkallu appear as griffins or simply as humans with wings. Some have the head of a bird, while others lack wings and are dressed in the skin of a fish.
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.
I like them. (it?)
Sigh. Here in Georgia, we do not get much snow. The smallest amount of snow in my area, which I will simply call the Metro Atlanta Area, tends to paralyze the city because 1) generally, natives do not know how to drive in it, and 2) until recently, we had no infrastructure to deal with it. Also, we tend to get more ice than snow.