The cross tattoo has become a very popular tattoo design among both men and women and you don’t have to be a devoted follower of any religion to have one on your skin. The reason why the cross tattoo is so popular is because they have so many different meanings that appeal to a wide number of different people. The most obvious meaning behind the cross tattoo is religion, as Christianity brought this symbol so much publicity that now it is one of the most recognized symbol in the world. Other people just get the cross tattoo design as a symbol of remembrance to a loved one and can combine it with a banner with names and/or dates on it. Another popular idea is rosary beads with the cross at the end and a tattoo artist could even work wrapping the beads around your wrist.
Brief History of Cross Tattoos
The cross is the most universal, recognizable and ancient symbol in the world. Before the cross became a holy and religious symbol, it was used as a cruel method for execution called crucifixion, the victims would be tied and nailed by their wrist and feet to a large wooden cross and left to hang there until they died. Once Christianity became the state religion, crucifixion was abolished. The horizontal beam of the cross was a symbol of the feminine which included the characteristics of passivity, earthiness, destruction and death. The vertical beam suggested its masculine counterpart, which was considered celestial, eternal, creative, positive, active and full of life. Nowadays, when it comes to religious symbol body art, the cross tattoo is by far the most popular tattoo design.
Cross Tattoo Designs
Celtic Crosses: The Celtic cross is one of the oldest and most popular cross tattoo designs. It is believed that the Celtic cross first originated in the 5th century where it was a symbol of the Celtic faith and also a symbol of the Celtic heritage. This popular Pagan symbol was very popular in Celtic communities, such as Ireland and Scotland and now the Celtic cross is mainly used to symbolize Christianity and religion. This design contains knot work, loops and mazes. The knots symbolize the link between the physical and the spiritual life, while the loops symbolize the never ending circle of life. People who get this tattoo design want to represent their faith in life and the circle of life. The Celtic cross is a great tattoo to choose to represent life and all the different paths we take in life.
Tribal Crosses: The tribal cross is another popular cross design and is one of the oldest tattooing styles. This design can be worn to give tribute to a tribe or ancestors but can be also worn by people who believe in or respect what a tribe stands for and want to have a connection to that meaning at all time. The tribal cross is done in tribal art and the traditional color for this tattoo is solid black ink but we are seeing more and more people adding different colors to their tribal tattoos.
Gothic Crosses: We are also beginning to see more and more people choosing Gothic crosses. The gothic cross is very similar to a religious cross but they have alternations to them, for example many of the gothic tattoos have snakes, dragons or barbed wired intertwined around the cross, therefore you won’t have to worry about someone mistaking your Gothic cross tattoo for a religious tattoo. The gothic cross tattoo design also has a darker meaning associated with it; they usually symbolize pain or anger and can also represent the Gothic culture.