Common Saints: St Lazarus, St Peter, St Anthony of Padua
Colours: Vary according to which Legba a house serves. Some combinations include red and white; as well as purple and gold
For all vodouisants, Legba occupies a prime position. The keeper of the gate between worlds, and indeed all doors and portals, it is through Legba that we access the other Lwa, and without him we find those doors firmly closed, no matter how hard we may knock. Due to this role, he is said to understand and speak all languages, and is the interpreter and translator for the others. Rites, services, and ceremonies open with salutes to him, following the drums and certain other important things.
Each of the many nations of Lwa has its own Legba, and often several. In the Rada rite, for example, we find Legba Atibon; Legba Soley; Legba Avadra; Legba Katawoulo; among others. It is often Legba who calls newcomers to Vodou, serving as the gate and introduction to their service. Each person has access to Legba, which is another way of saying we all have a Legba who walks with us.
In West Africa, where Legba originates, he is a very different spirit, and appears as a virile, ithyphallic, solar-associated trickster, but the journey to Haiti changes everything, and this includes the lwa in many ways. The image to the right, depicting St Lazarus of Bethany, is a common one for Legba, who appears in many of his manifestations as an old and road-weary man, leaning on a cane or crutch. He is easily satisfied with consistent, simple offerings, enjoying (in general) grilled corn or root vegetables; a pipe and tobacco; rum; gin; molasses; peanuts; candies; keys; and coffee. A special cylindrical basket or bag called a makout Legba is a specific item frequently offered to him, and in which his items are placed. Many vodouisants hang it in a tree sacred to him, or mount it on a wall near their door.
In recent years, Legba has had to deal with a tarnished name; the third season of American Horror Story, subtitled Coven, included a lwa of sorts named for him, but who is so different from Legba that it borders on defamation.