181 INSANE DRAGON TATTOOS: Meanings, Tattoo Ideas & Tattoo Designs

DRAGON TATTOOS

Humans have always been inspired and amazed by the impossible, often creating myths and legends about such things, giving life to amazing stories and countless epics. But no other creature seems more impossible than a winged lizard that spits fire and can instill terror in the hearts of men with a simple gaze.

Dragons have long been a fascination of the human mind, starting early on in the Ancient Mesopotamia, going through Ancient China, and spreading to the Early Egypt Empire, Greek World, Arthurian Legends, Norse Mythology, and countless other places.

In some places Dragons were considered a bad omen, menacing creatures that brought forth only death and flames, while in other places were considered divine beings, being one with nature and bringing good omens and good luck to those that were lucky enough to gaze their eyes upon them.

Whatever the case is, people decided to immortalize such creatures in countless stories, written myths, statues, paintings, works of art, and stories to frighten readers. Some prefer to get dragon tattoos on their bodies, as a symbol of hope or despair. For now, we try to dig further into why people would choose to tattoo such creatures on their bodies.

Dragon Tattoos Meaning

Soo what do dragon tattoos symbolize?

Word and written stories passed down the ages through either word of mouth or writings, describing the dragons as being Bringer of Omens, Death and fire spilled from above, masters of elements, and possessors of ancient knowledge and wisdom.

In various regions of the world, myths about dragons started differently, in one place they considered dragons as peaceful beings, protectors of nature, and masters over the elements, while in other places the dragons were considered devastating beings, and became cautionary tales to frighten people.

In gaming culture, for example, dragons are considered to be the end goal of one’s journey. You may get a glimpse of them at the beginning when starting your journey, the goal is to make you aspire to improve yourself, just so you can best the final foe at the end of your journey. Not a bad way of celebrating your journey, than slaying a dragon that you worked your way towards.

The gamers which have been fascinated with fantasy games turned their eyes towards picking dragon tattoos as their next piece. And how could they not? Such a creature is bound to stir emotions into anyone gazing upon such dragon tattoos.

Ancient Asian Dragons

In the Asian continent, especially in Ancient China, the Emperors that sat on the thrones were considered to have been sons of the dragons, meant to rule mankind, The Chinese Dragons had the body of long serpents with claws and anthropomorphic faces, covered with a beard and usually having antler horns on their head.

Often in Chinese lore, the Dragon appears to be seen in the battle against the tiger. Though the tiger would not be considered a worthy foe against the dragon, it appears that to not be the case. The tiger is often seen as being the ferocity and vitality of men, always fighting their wild nature.

The Dragons were considered to have been the friends of humanity, always bringing kindness and knowledge to the masses of people. Thus they ended up being revered by the Chinese people and even to this day the Dragons are being celebrated during festivals. The Dragon is considered one of the most important characters in the Chinese Zodiac and is said that those being born during the Dragon sign and blessed by luck.

A modern approach to such Dragon would be ShenLong of the Japanese hit series of the 80s and ’90s of Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z, where Shenlong would grant you any wish managed to gather all 7 Dragon Balls scattered throughout the world.

As a kid you might have watched the japanese hit series Pokemon, and at some point seen a rather useless water-based pokemon, called Magikarp. Well, upon evolving, that Magikarp would turn into a Gyarados, a rather menacing water dragon creature.

Well this is based of the famous chinese story of a Koi who turned into a shiny dragon, upon swimming up a waterfall for several hundred of years. This feat was witnessed by the gods, so in turn they rewarded the koi fish by turning it into a golden dragon.

Combine these elements into your Dragon tattoos and you will get a lot of eyes turned upon your skin.

Ancient Greek Dragons

The most notable dragon-like creature of the Greek World is the Hydra. Monstrous in shape, it is said that whenever one head got cut off, another 2 would spawn in its place. That made it tricky to fight against, and the only notable person that was able to fight off against the Hydra is Hercules, the demigod spawn of Zeus. Hercules had to fight against the Hydra, as it was part of his Twelve Labors.

Western Dragons

In Medieval times the dragons were symbols of fear, the shape of it being drawn on armor and shields, alongside house emblems, as to stop in its tracks anyone who meant harm to the wielder of such items.

The Medieval myths about the dragons were that the creature was capable of flight, and while being angered it would be capable of spilling forth a sea of fire from his mouth.

These are the types of dragons that the most famous high-fantasy books write about, and that movie-makers enjoy bringing to life on a screen. The most famous of such dragons are, of course, Smaug, the Destroyer, the Bane of Dwarves, from the famous Hobbit book by J.R.R. Tolkien and later on brought to cinematic screens, while other famous Dragons would be Khaleesi’s dragons, from Game of Thrones, one such dragon being the Black Death, Drogon.

Mexican Dragons

Quetzalcóatl

In indigenous people of the Americas had their own legend about who created the Earth and brought forth the Rains to bless the lands. The chief god amongst the gods was Quetzalcóatl, the Serpent God. Though not quite what you’d imagine a dragon to be, Quetzalcóatl had actually the body of a serpent, with feathered wings, and the beak of a bird.

Quetzalcóatl is said to have gifted technology to the human race, and still to this day it is considered the pride of the Mexican people. He is a god capable of controlling wind and air freely.

Hindu and Buddhism Legends Of Dragons

It appears that the regional dragons of the Hindu and Buddhism legends are the Naga creatures. They resemble a creature with the lower body of a snake and the upper body of a human. This is the form of an aquatic creature, rather than the earth type or a flying type of dragon. Though nonetheless, the Nagas are considered worthy foes in Legends.

Ancient Egypt Dragons

In the Egyptian Pantheon, The Sun God, Ra was known to have been the Almighty Creator of the world and everything in it, and is said that during the day he would drive his chariot across the skies bringing forth the light of the sun across the land, while in the evening he would battle his eternal foe, the Demon Dragon Apep (also known as Apophis) , that was meant to destroy the world.

Ra would always manage to vanquish his foe, each time defeating him in a different way. But the cycles always repeat, and the Dragon would always resurrect the following night and would fight Ra so he could accomplish his desire to destroy the world that Ra created.

Norse Dragons

The Norse Mythology has vast lore filled with sagas and skaldic poems of heroes, villains, ancient creatures, feisty Gods, and bountiful feasts in the Halls of Valhalla. Among these stories, we can find epics of monstrous dragons that only a few chosen beings dared to go against them.

Nidhogg

One such dragon is the dragon named Nidhogg is said to have gnawed at the roots of the World Tree, Yggdrasil. The roots were said to have been a prison for Nidhogg, trapping him so he cannot be set loose into the Midgard.

Fafnir

What happens when greed takes over your mind? You turn into a dragon, due to the cursed treasure you hoard. The story of Fafnir the dwarf who turned into a cursed dragon that guards his treasure is one tale of caution.

Fafnir ended up getting killed by a legendary hero, Sigurd, and having all of his treasure taken, despite warning Sigurd that anyone who ends up possessing the treasure loses their mind. Sigurd’s reply was “all men must one day die, and all men dream of dying rich”

Jörmungandr

Have you ever heard of the phrase “snake eating its own tail?” It comes from the tale of Jörmungandr, the Midgard Serpent, the humongous snake that encircles Midgard (The middle earth) – The home of the mortals. Jörmungandr is the son of Loki, alongside Hel and Fenrir.

It is said that when Jörmungandr grew so big that he was able to encircle Midgard and bite his own tail, he gained the Midgard Snake. And the moment that he releases his tail, Ragnarok would begin. The end of the world.

It is fated that Jörmungandr would fight with his mortal enemy, Thor, at Ragnarok. Thus signifying the last battle. It is said that Jörmungandr would poison the sea and the air, and would fight with Thor until Jörmungandr gets killed, while Thor dies by poison, right after walking off a few feet.

When it comes to dragon tattoos, Jörmungandr is usually the most picked for a new tattoo, especially for the ouroboros shape it has, once he bites his tail.

Tribal Dragon Tattoos

The spirals of tribal tattoos can blend perfectly with the shape of a dragon.
As there are no shades or coloring involved in a Tribal Style Tattoo, the drawing style is not actually too complicated to create. This is why tribal dragon tattoos makes this style so popular among people.

Dragon Tattoo Ideas

Tattoo Style

By now we hope you have a vague idea about the type of dragon that you wish to tattoo on your body, and if not, don’t worry, we will always try to help you out by giving you plenty of ideas and examples from where to get inspired and create the perfect tattoo for yourself.

If you do have a general idea of how you wish the dragon to be shaped, then the next step would be to decide on the drawing style. Maybe you prefer a more neo-traditional approach, or you wish to have a full realistic dragon as your next piece.

Maybe you just want a sketch-style tattoo, or you want to do a full black work design. Feeling a bit adventurous? Then try adding a splash of color, or just make it full-colored, to give it that extra edge on the menacing part.

Body Placement For Dragon Tattoos

Have you decided on the place where your tattoo will be positioned?
The arms are a great place if you want to make a sinuous-shaped dragon, such as the Chinese dragons, which can be coiled as a design on the arm.

The biceps and shoulder area is a great place for a dragon in flight that tries to soar higher and higher, the same for the legs and calf area.

The back however can be a great canvas if you wish to create a huge dragon tattoo, or a story depicting a battle of a knight against a dragon, for example, or just create an immense image of a dragon in all of its majesty.

One simply cannot do wrong by picking the dragon tattoo for back to the back to express their story and struggles in life, especially if at times it feels like battling your inner demons and bringing them to life.

Whatever is the position of the dragon tattoo you wish to get, we just want you to always remember that you can get inspired by lore, legends, poems, and art, as well as any tattoos that were done before, but to always discuss things with your tattoo artist of choice, so that you can always create a unique piece that will fit your vibes and personality.

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