Unearthing the mysteries of Cross Tattoos

Although at first glance one assumes that cross tattoos are based on christain symbolism, cross tattoos have been in existence before the birth of christ. Ancient tribes utilized the cross sign to represent various things. In ancient Egypt, the cross symbolized life or the sexual union of the male and female gods.

In Assyria, the four points of a cross symbolized the four directions. Crude forms of crosses were also found in pre-Christian Scandanavia. Since the advent of Christianity the cross is strongly associated with Christ and his crucifixation.

Types of Cross Tattoos

Cross tattoos can take on various shapes. The most common ones are listed below.

  • Celtic cross tattoo: Celtic crosses are particularly beautiful in appearance. Celtic crosses tend to have a circle drawn in the middle of the cross. This circle could be small and centered in the cross of could be much larger almost enveloping the cross.
  • Maltese Cross Tattoo: Maltese cross tattoos have a distinctive shape. A large circle is surrounded by what appears to be inverted triangles. Each arm of the cross has a symbolic meaning for various human virtues including courage and bravery. Since Maltese tattoos are signs of bravery and duty they are very popular among soldiers and firefighters.
  • Egyptian Cross: The most popular Egyptian cross is the Ankh cross. The upper part of the cross forms a loop. This loop symbolizes the key to life. Ankh crosses are often paired with other distinctive Egyptian symbols like the Scarab beetle.
  • Gothic Cross: Gothic cross tattoos are probably the most intricate and ornate of all crosses. The lines can be thick and thin and can be covered with swirls and other patterns in such profusion that it is sometimes difficult to recognize the pattern as a cross tattoo.
  • Latin Cross Tattoo: This is the traditional cross associated with Christianity. Latin cross tattoos can be done by themselves or feature an image of Christ. Many also get Latin cross tattoos with a heart surrounded by thorns or with an image of an open bible. Some people get a Latin cross tattoo with a name to commemorate the memory of a loved one that is deceased. 

Where to get a cross tattoo

The most common part of the body to get a cross tattoo is on the arms or the back. The ones on the arms can look particularly stunning. The ones on the back can be very large and intricate and can be combined with other images or symbols. Cross tattoos are typically large and ornate when done on men and tend to be smaller and more rudimentary looking on females. The Egyptian cross tattoo is an eternal favorite with many women while men tend to be drawn to the Maltese, Celtic, Gothic or the Latin cross tattoos.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Looking for a great tattoo design?

Tattoos designs

Get Thousands of Tattoo Ideas