Thoth is a major god of Egypt who is sometimes depicted as a dog-faced baboon.
This is a form of Thoth known as A'an, God of Equilibrium. (Budge, The Gods of the Egyptians Vol. 1 p. 403)
You can find a list of African Monkey Gods here. The references all come from EA Wallis Budge’s Hieroglyphic Dictionary, which is dated 1920, so some of the scholarship ...
What are the origins of the Ethiopian Christmas day game of Gena?
It is Ethiopian tradition that the country was converted to Christianity during the time of the Apostles. We see in Acts 8: 26-40 that the Apostle Philip baptized a prominent Ethiopian eunuch, who in turn was believed to have evangelized his home country of Ethiopia.
We believe that ...
There is a category on Wikipedia dedicated to this subject, and Mental Floss has a list of 11 rather interesting creatures of African mythology:
Grootslang is an Afrikaans word meaning "great snake." The monster of that name lives in a cave called the Wonder Hole in the Richtersveld area of South Africa. The story is that the original ...
There is some information here about why the number 400 is sacred (and the "plus one" probably indicates it being innumerable, i.e. a multitude and one more): Number of Orishas
This only answers what the significance of the 401 is, but not the other numbers, sadly.
There are also completely different numbers, here for example 1200 Orishas
It looks like it depends. I listed a few examples below.
At least a number of them are primordial deities. Orunmila, for example, was present at the beginning of creation.
The primordial Orishas "emanated directly from God without any human aid," according to Britannica.
Wikipedia says that Obatala was "brought to life by the smooth breath of ...
Variations of this story appear to be very common in Africa and according to African Mythology A to Z no reason is usually given for the second messenger:
A common theme in many stories about the origin of death is the "failed message." In the basic story, two creatures are sent to humans, the first with a message of life and the second with a ...