Wolf tattoos – their symbolism and meaning

The Wolf is a popular icon all throughout human civilization, representing everything from danger and evil to spirituality and brotherhood.

The range of symbolism comes from the many extraordinary faces of the wolf itself. They are pack animals; loyal, sociable, able to work together… but at the same time they are terrifying, highly cunning, and insanely ferocious.

The appeal of Wolf Designs

Men’s wolf tattoos are predominately portraits depicting the animal’s strength, intelligence, loyalty, and hunting skills. Wolf designs for women tend to be more symbolic of the spiritual side, harking back to Native American folk lore. Native Americans viewed the wolf as a totem animal or spirit sent to help guide us through life, symbolizing loyalty and perseverance.

Although famously hunting in packs, wolves can also be ostracised from the group, resulting in a Lone Wolf. This is very popular with people who have always considered themselves loners, or feel separated from society.

Wolves are also survivors, and an affinity exists with those who have also survived hardships. Sexual abuse, serious illness, car crashes… any traumatic event in someone’s past can personify itself in the form of a wolf tattoo.

From Roman mythology (Romulus and Remus) to modern pop culture (Twilight), wolves have been a a part of our folk and fairy tales. Little Red Riding Hood is a warning to children to beware the wolves in the forest, while Teenwolf is about unleashing your inner hero.

Whether they are representing good or evil, wolves are always powerful, and the same can be said about a wolf tattoo.

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