Hieroglyphics are some of the oldest pieces of art that we have, and they happen to look great in tattoo form. The Egyptians used hieroglyphics as their writing system, giving them a way to not only communicate with each other but also to leave behind a written history that we otherwise wouldn’t know about.
Each hieroglyph holds its own meaning, so it is very easy to come up with your own unique hieroglyphic tattoo that is both beautiful and meaningful. Think of hieroglyphic tattoos as very old-school text tattoos but with images instead of letters.
There are far too many Egyptian hieroglyphics to list on this page, but we will be taking a look at some of the most popular and meaningful ones on this page. If you’re thinking about getting a hieroglyphics tattoo, it’s worth knowing about as many as you possibly can so you can fill out your design with images that can give people a better understanding of who you are.
Popular Hieroglyphics Tattoo Meanings
Possibly the most popular and recognizable hieroglyph is the pharaoh, which represents leadership and power. In most cases, people who include the pharaoh in their hieroglyphics tattoo do so to show that they are proud of their leadership skills or they very much want to be better leaders. The pharaoh hieroglyph is often larger than the other images, though this isn’t always the case.
If you want to include “protection” in your hieroglyphics tattoo, then you will want to add in the very popular Eye of Ra. This is one of the most recognizable hieroglyphs in the world because of its unique eye design and the fact that it is seen in so many well-known Egyptian hieroglyphics. There are some variations of the Eye of Ra, but you will find that most people like to stick to the original design.
Unsurprisingly, the pyramid is also found in quite a few hieroglyphic tattoos. The pyramid has quite a few meanings, which is one of the reasons why it is so popular. They can represent strength due to the fact that many have been able to stand the test of time. They can also represent endurance for similar reasons, but also because the people who built them worked long, hard hours and didn’t want to quit until their jobs were done.
Other Hieroglyphics Tattoo Meanings
The Ankh hieroglyph is an excellent design to include in hieroglyphic tattoos not only because of its clean design but also because it has some fantastic meanings. It symbolizes life, love, and eternity, though you can get one to only represent one or two of those meanings. It’s also one of the best hieroglyphs to get if you want to create a religious tattoo.
If you are the type of person who is mysterious, then the Sphinx image would be an excellent addition to your hieroglyphics tattoo. The Sphinx is a very recognizable Egyptian design, showing a woman’s head on top of a lion’s body. The Sphinx also has other meanings, including danger and riskiness, which can be used alone or alongside any of the other meanings associated with the hieroglyph.
Two more good reasons to get a hieroglyphic are to show that you are proud of your Egyptian roots or that you’re simply a big fan of Egyptian history. A lot of people have understandable respect for what the Egyptians have done for humanity, especially the older societies, and hieroglyphic tattoos do a great job of showing that.
Those who want to get very specific with their hieroglyphics tattoos can choose to use lesser-known symbols to write out exactly what they want to say in their designs. For example, if you wanted to get a quote tattoo in this form, then you could find the hieroglyph for each word in the quote. Just be sure to factor in how large the design is going to have to be as you add in symbols since they can sometimes take up a lot of space, especially if you don’t want the symbols to be too small.
Hieroglyphics Tattoo Designs and Placement
There are a lot of ways that you can get a hieroglyphics tattoo designed. You can have one large symbol stand out in front of a bunch of smaller symbols, or you might instead opt to get them all the same size. You could try to give them an aged look to make them appear as they do on ancient artifacts, or you could modernize the look by getting crisp lines and shadowwork.
What really matters is that you end up with a hieroglyphic tattoo that is both attractive to your eye and is going to be meaningful for the rest of your life. Some people might really want a sleeve tattoo and will make sure that the hieroglyphs that they choose work well in that type of design. Others will choose their hieroglyphs first and then find a way to make those symbols work in their design, regardless of where it is placed.
Speaking of placement, there are a few preferred places on the body that hieroglyphic tattoos often go, but you can find a way to make these tattoos fit just about anywhere. It is worth keeping in mind that hieroglyphic tattoos are usually vertical designs, so if you are already interested in getting a vertical tattoo, you might find the design and placement process a bit easier.
Is the Hieroglyphics Tattoo Right for You?
It’s very easy to see why hieroglyphic tattoos are gaining in popularity these days. They look great on the skin in color and in black and grey, and they can easily be custom-built to have just about any meaning that you want them to. They’re certainly not for everyone, but fans of the look of hieroglyphs or of Egyptian culture in general usually find hieroglyphics to be excellent tattoo ideas.
If you are thinking about getting a hieroglyphics tattoo, it would be a good idea to find an artist in your area who has worked with these types of designs in the past.