Phrygian and Lydian deity, worshipped in other parts of Asia Minor too. By most accounts son of the Mother Goddess Cybele, also known as Agdistis, whom many also identify as Rhea, consort of Cronos. He was born to Nana after she ate the fruit of an almond tree which had sprung from the severed male genitalia of Agdistis, who had been born a hermaphrodite. In the wake of the introduction of Cybele to Rome in 204 BCE, Attis followed as a cult deity but became increasingly important and was eventually widely worshipped as a celestial god, as documented by the Roman poet Catullus. Upon his death he is said to have turned into a pine tree, a tree which became sacred to him.
His major rites were spring rites related to fertility and vegetation and he figures as an archetypical solar god. In many versions of the myths he appears as his mother's lover and his figure bears a strong resemblance to Osiris and Adonis whose equivalent he may be taken as. His mother's jealous love of his beauty made her compel him to castrate himself so that no other woman could have him. From his blood it is said that the violet, a plant characteristic of spring and the earth, sprang. His feast, although less rowdy than its ancient counterpart, survives in the form of the Christian Easter as a celebration of the resurrection of a newer solar deity, Jesus Christ.
His priesthood in Phrygia, the Galli, was made up of eunuchs. Rome and other cultures who adopted him, including the Greeks and Gauls, did not make that a requirement but some people followed that path anyway. On the day the Romans knew as Sanguis, young men would dance in a frenzy and eventually slash their arms and spread their blood around. A few of them would end up castrating themselves and throwing their genitals at the statue of Cybele. These men would then enter a residence and the householders would furnish them with women's clothing, after which they would join the priesthood of Attis.