The raven is a dark, elegant bird that translates nicely into a tattoo. Like most animal designs, the raven is usually deeply symbolic to the wearer. It can be designed in many different ways to convey your personal meaning and suit your personality.
The raven appears in many myths, fairy tales and religions and has its meaning for humans. In the Christian religion, the raven is an evil devilish bird. Ancient Chinese on the contrary, the raven is a symbol of power and tenacity. In Iceland, the raven is considered the messenger of death. A Chinese legend tells of a sacred raven that lives on the sun and thus the raven is connected to the sun. So you can often find the sun on a raven tattoo. In Africa, the raven is a symbol of unity and in Japan’s family love. The raven is very common in Norse mythology and is a popular tattoo motif. The Raven plays the main role in Brothers Grimm’s fairy tale “The Seven Ravens”. In the mythology of the Indians, the raven hung the sun and the stars on the sky. The raven is also a totem animal and is considered the creator of the world. It was believed that ravens and wolves were companions of the gods of the underworld. Therefore, a raven tattoo can also be interpreted as a symbol of sadness and pain of loss.
Raven Tattoo Designs
On its own, this bird can make an extraordinary design. The raven can be portrayed in various postures, like flying with its wings open or crouched on a perch. There’s no wrong way to do it. But of course, pairing the raven with other objects helps underline and convey its meaning.
- If a tattoo represents death, it might be combined with a skull, a clock or timepiece, or a bloody arrow. It is not uncommon to see raven tattoo designs with blood.
- If meant to signify the death of a loved one, that person’s name or the date they died might be inked, as well.
- They can also be done in Celtic or tribal style. Although tribal tattoos have little symbolic significance, the Celtic raven is associated with war, magic, and misery.
- The bird from Edgar Allan Poe’s classic epic horror poem, “The Raven,” is a common design. The poet’s face or the word “nevermore” might be incorporated, on a banner or on book’s spine.
- To accentuate the wisdom and prescience of the symbolism, the raven might be paired with an open eyeball, crystal balls, or a full moon.