TATTOO DESIGNS & SYMBOLS - HERALDIC ANIMALS & SYMBOLS
Tattoo designs - H >> Heraldic Animals & Symbols
Heraldic Tattoos - The following is a listing (with meanings) of the most common heraldic animals and the symbols of heraldry.
Anchor - Succor in extremity and the Christian symbol of hope.
Cat or Cat-A-Mountain - Liberty, vigilance, forecast and courage.
Catharine Wheel - Emblem of one who is prepared to undergo great trials for the Christian faith.
Celestial Crown - Heavenly reward.
Centaur - For those who have been eminent in the field.
Chains - A reward for acceptable or weighty service.
Chaplets and Wreaths - Granted for special service.
Clarion or Rest - Ready for the fray.
Cock - Courage, always ready for battle, ready to fight to the death.
Cockatrice - Terror to all beholders.
Cornucopia - Bounty of Nature's gifts.
Crescent - Signifies one who has been enlightened and honored by the gracious aspect of his sovereign.
Crossed Thigh-bones - Mortality.
Crosses - Symbolic of some Christian experience or sentiment.
Crow - Signifies a settled habitation and a quiet life.
Crown - Royal or seigniorial authority.
Cubes, squares or dice - Constancy, wisdom, verity probity, and equity.
Cushions - Marks of authority.
Dolphin - Charity and a kind affection towards children.
Double Eagle and Eagle - Signifies a man of action, ever more occupied in high and weighty affairs, and one of lofty spirit, ingenious, speedy in apprehension and judicious in matters of ambiguity.
Dove - Loving constancy and peace.
Dragon - A most valiant defender of treasure.
Elephant - Courage and strength.
Escallop Shell - One who has made long journeys or voyages to far countries, who had borne considerable naval command or who had gained great victories.
Escarbuncle - Supremacy.
Estoiles - Emblems of God's goodness or of some eminence in the first bearer above the ruder sort of men.
Eye - Providence in Government.
Falcon or Hawk - One eager or hot in the pursuit of an object much desired.
Feathers (usually ostrich) - Willing obedience and serenity.
Fire - Zeal.
Flaming Heart - Ardent affection.
Foot - Strength, stability and expedition.
Fox - One who will use all that he may posses of sagacity, wit or wisdom in his own defense.
Fret - Persuasion
Fusil - Travel and labour.
Fusil of Yarn - Negotiation.
Gannet - To subsist by the wings of his virtue and merit, having little land to rest upon.
Gauntlet - Signify a man armed for the performance of martial enterprise.
Goat - Emblem of that martial man who wins a victory by the employment rather of policy than valor.
Gold Roundles - One who has been found worthy of trust and treasure.
Gold Spur - Dignity of knighthood.
Goose and Duck - A man of many resources.
Grasshopper - Wisdom and nobility.
Griffin - Sets forth the property of a valorous soldier whose magnanimity is such that he will dare all dangers, and even death itself, rather than become captive.
Hand - Faith, sincerity and justice.
Hares and Rabbits - One who enjoys a peaceable and retired life.
Harp - Contemplation.
Harpy - Ferocity under provocation.
Hawks or Falcons Bells - One who feared not to signal his approach in either peace or war.
Heart - Charity, sincerity.
Hedgehog - Provident provider.
Heraldic Tiger - Great fierceness and valor when enraged to combat; one whose resentment will be dangerous if aroused.
Horns and Antlers - Strength and Fortitude.
Horse - Readiness for all employments for king and country.
Horse Shoe - Good luck.
House Snail - Deliberation and perseverance.
Human Head - Honor.
Hunting Horn - One who is fond of high pursuits.
Hydra - The conquest of a very powerful enemy.
Inkhorn - Emblematic of the liberal art of writing and of learned employments.
Lamb - Gentleness and patience under suffering.
Leg - Strength, stability and expedition.
Leopard - Valiant and hardy warrior.
Lightning - The effecting of some weighty business with great clarity and force.
Lion - Deathless courage.
Lozenge - Honesty and constancy, also held to be a token of noble birth.
Lyre - Contemplation.
Mermaid - Eloquence.
Millstones - The mutual converse of human society.
Moon - Serene power over mundane actions.
Mullet - Denotes some Divine quality bestowed from above.
Other Shells - Protection of Providence.
Owl - One who is vigilant and of acute wit.
Panther - As a lion may be said to signify a brave man, so may a panther a beautiful woman, which, though fierce, is very tender and loving to her young, and will defend it with the hazard of her life.
Pastoral Crosier - The emblem of a shepherd's watchfulness over his flock, and denotes Episcopal jurisdiction and authority.
Peacock - Beauty and pride of carriage.
Pegasus - Exceeding activity and energy of mind whereby one may mount to honour.
Pelican - Devoted and self-sacrificing charity.
Pen - Emblematic of the liberal art of writing and of learned employments.
Pillar or Column - Fortitude and constancy.
Phoenix - Resurrection.
Portcullis - Effectual protection in emergency.
Purse - A frank and liberal steward of the blessings that God has bestowed.
Ram - Authority.
Raven - One who, having derived little from his ancestors, has through Providence become the architect of his own fortunes or one of an enduring constancy of nature.
Red Hand - Usual mark for a baronet if borne on a small escutcheon.
Rhinoceros - Great ferocity when aroused.
Rocks - Safety, refuge and protection.
Saddles, Stirrups and Spurs - Preparedness for active service.
Scaling Ladder - One who was fearless in attacking.
Sceptre - Justice.
Scythe - Hope of a fruitful harvest of things hoped for.
Shacklebolt - Victory in war.
Shield - A defender.
Ship, Lumphiad or Galley - All such symbols would point to some notable expedition by sea, by which, perhaps, the first bearers had become famous.
Shoe - Strength, stability and expedition.
Sickle - Hope of a fruitful harvest of things hoped for.
Silver Spur - An esquire.
Skulls - Mortality.
Snake - Wisdom.
Spear or Lance - Knightly service and devotion to honor.
Spear Heads or Pheons - Dexterity and nimbleness of wit to penetrate and understand matters of highest consequence.
Sphinx - Omniscience and secrecy.
Spider - Wisdom, labor and providence in all affairs.
Stag, Hart, Buck and Deer - Policy, Peace and Harmony.
Squirrel - Sylvan retirement being the delight of its bearer.
Stork - Filial duty, emblem of a grateful man.
Sun - Glory and splendor.
Swallow - One who is prompt and ready in the dispatch of his business.
Swan - A lover of poetry and harmony.
Sword - Indicates the bearer to a just and generous pursuit of honor and virtue in warlike deeds.
Talbot, Mastiff and Greyhound - Courage, vigilancy and loyal fidelity.
Tiger - Great fierceness and valor when enraged to combat; one whose resentment will be dangerous if aroused.
Tortoise - Invulnerability to attack.
Tower or Castle - Grandeur and solidity. Sometimes granted to one who has held one for his king, or who has captured one by force or stratagem.
Trestles and stools - Hospitality.
Trident - Maritime dominion.
Trumpet - Ready for the fray.
Trunk of a Tree - An object of veneration.
Unicorn - Extreme courage.
Water Bougets - Conferred on those who had brought water to an army or besieged place.
Wheel - Fortune.
White Roundles - Generosity.
Wings - Celebrity, sometimes protection or coverture.
Wolf - Denotes valiant captains that do in the end gain their attempts after long sieges and hard enterprises. One whom it is dangerous to assail or thwart.
See also: Scottish Clan Tattoo Index
Tattoo designs - H >> Heraldic Animals & Symbols
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