Dragon Tattoo Meanings

The dragon, derived from the Greek term ‘large serpent,’ was a prominently featured mythical creature in European and Asian folklore. In Europe, dragons were viewed as sinister beasts, slain by knights; in China, the dragon was a symbol of good fortune and prosperity. With their elaborate history, dragons have become popular tattoo designs, and, as a result, a variety of dragon designs have come into existence. If you’re interested in learning more about the meaning behind these dragon tattoo designs, read our list below!

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Chinese Tattoo Meanings

Originating in traditional Eastern culture, Chinese tattoos have become popular in the Western world due to the powerful symbolism behind the unique designs. These tattoos relate to the mythical flora and fauna of Chinese folklore, and the symbols often represent a cherished cultural value. A couple of the designs are related to Buddhism, a prominent faith in China. If you’re interested in learning more about Chinese tattoo meanings, check out our list below!

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Japanese Tattoo Meanings

Tattoos have a long history in Japan, starting around 10,000 BC. While there was a period of time in Japan when tattoos were frowned upon and worn by prisoners, there were also many years where they were worn for spiritual or decorative purposes. Known for their eye-catching appeal, many of these tattoo designs flaunt expansive and colourfully detailed looks. Check out the Japanese tattoo meanings list, and find the matching images in the gallery below!

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Nautical Tattoo Meanings

“A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.”

Once upon a time sailors marked their bodies with tattoos as badges of honor that marked personal and professional milestones.

The life of a sailor was full of mystery and adventure. The lure of the sea brought with it risk, danger, and superstition. Symbols permanently inked on their bodies bolstered them to cross seas, sail to the ends of the earth and discover new adventures in the face of death.

Though most of us are not sailors, we still navigate the stormy seas of life, counting distances, marking achievements and defying the odds.

To inspire your next tattoo design, consider the meaning and symbolism of sailor and nautical tattoos. Here is a list of the meanings behind the most common sailor tattoos.

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Nature Tattoo Meanings

Nature has always been a source of inspiration for art: so many of our collective experiences are tied to a special place in the outdoors, whether it’s your childhood hiking spot, the critters native to your hometown forest, or your favorite beach getaway. Powerful associations are easily made between our own lives and the natural world, so it’s hardly a surprise that nature is a popular feature in tattoo art. Browse through this list of nature tattoo symbols, and learn about some of the common meanings behind the art!

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Religious & Philosophical Tattoo Meanings

Some of the earliest tattoos in history were rooted in spiritual philosophies. In fact, many important spiritual or philosophical tattoo designs predated organized religion. Once religion became widespread, religious tattoo designs also became popular, and they were worn to show devotion to the faith. If you’re interested in learning more about the meanings behind religious tattoos, check out our list below!

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Mythological Tattoo Meanings

Myths are fantastical stories with a powerful, often truthful, message. These stories include images showing a mystical side of nature, describing creatures with super powers, like ‘fire-breathing’ or ‘immortality’. Mythological tattoos are an artistic way to represent an idea people find personally meaningful. Browse through our list of popular mythology tattoos to learn more about the story behind the image.

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Military Tattoo Designs

Military tattoo designs date back to the Civil War and they’re especially popular with those who have served. These patriotic designs tell a story about life in the military, and celebrate the accomplishments and courage of soldiers. In reading this list, you may notice that many of the tattoo designs are closely related to a specific military branch, such as the Marines, the Navy, the Army, or the Air Force. If you’re interested in learning more about the meanings behind these military symbols, read our list below!

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