The strut, the multifaceted “eyes”, the vibrant colors, the ostentatious display of feathers – when a peacock is near, you cannot help but stop and stare. And, it has been this way for centuries. Peacocks feature in Ancient Greek and Hindu stories, and humanity has attached deep meaning to this species of bird.
Due to the symbolism and mythology that the peacock is wrapped up in, this bird and its feathers create eye-catching, meaningful tattoos.
Let’s take a look at the meaning behind peacock tattoos, the mythology that surrounds this bird, and tattoo ideas.
Peacocks In Mythology
While peacocks were always known as beautiful birds, they played a big role in the stories of the Ancient Greek gods and goddesses, namely Hera, the wife of Zeus.
“…they took on a Greek provenance when they became a symbol of the goddess Hera, whose chariot they pulled,”Greek Reporter
As you look further into tales of these Greek immortals, you realize how many affairs Zeus had, which was particularly upsetting for Hera.
One story tells of how Hera immortalized one of her faithful watchmen by turning his one hundred eyes into the spectacular “eyes” on the tail of a peacock to make sure Zeus didn’t cheat on her.
Not only in Greece does this majestic bird have meaning, but in India, too, where it is the national bird. It holds this prime position due to its appearances in religious and legendary Indian traditions.
“It is believed that the mayura, or the peacock, was created from one of the feathers of Garuda (a mythical bird in Hindu mythology and a carrier of Lord Vishnu)…According to a number of Hindu scriptures, it is a symbol of the cycle of time,”Sanskriti Magazine
Meaning Behind Peacock Tattoos
According to Hindu stories, the peacock is identified with Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth.
“That is why people keep peacock feathers at home, believing that they will bring wealth and prosperity into the house,”Sanskriti Magazine
So, a tattoo of a peacock or a peacock feature can represent wealth in life.
Besides wealth, some people also have peacock feathers in their home to keep it clear of negative energy. This is because the peacock is considered to be a bird of protection and safeguarding – both physically and psychically.
The goal of Buddhism is to become enlightened and reach nirvana, but of course there are many obstacles on this path.
“Peacocks are able to eat poisonous plants and fruits considered toxic to humans. As a result, Buddhists believe the peacock symbolizes one’s ability to take in the ‘poisons’ of life while still continuing on the path towards enlightenment,”Buddha Groove
Further to this, because of the fanned feathers, peacocks are also a sign of spiritual openness and acceptance in Buddhism.
Author Richard Webster in the Encyclopedia of Superstition said that Romans associated peacocks with immortality because, “…people noticed that peacocks’ feathers did not fade or lose their shiny luster.”
This symbol also permeated the Christian faith, as the theme of resurrection is a cornerstone of the religion.
Peacock Tattoo Ideas
Colorful Peacock Bird Tattoo
Of course, because of their plumage, a peacock tattoo is the perfect opportunity to go really colorful. Blues, greens, yellows, and purples are the most dominant colors on the magnificent feathers.
When first complete, a colorful tattoo done in the watercolor style looks incredible with all the shades mingling together.
However, as time goes on, a color tattoo does tend to fade faster than black ink tattoos. To prolong the crispness of your ink, always follow aftercare instructions from your tattoo artist, cover your healing tattoo from the sun, and use SPF when it is fully healed.
Mini Peacock Tattoo
Are you a fan of tiny tattoos? Just because you would also like a peacock tattoo with details, it doesn’t mean you have to go large with your design. With mini detailed tattoos, as with all tattoos, it is important to go to a tattooist who is experienced in this style.
This is because the smaller the tattoo, the easier it is to mess up – and, because it’s so small, you can’t hide mistakes.
Plus, the more details you include in your mini tattoo, the quicker the lines can blur together. This is also mitigated when you go to a professional tattoo artist who specializes in tiny detailed tattoos.
Peacock Feather Tattoo
Don’t want to go for a full peacock tattoo? A single peacock feather is an amazing choice, and does not take away from the deep meaning of this animal.
Not only is the feather beautiful, it also represents royalty – the Peacock Throne was a famous jeweled throne that was the seat of the emperors of the Mughal Empire in India. It was named after the peacock because of the two peacocks that are depicted dancing on it.
It can also represent chasing away evil spirits.
Black And Gray Peacock Tattoos
Want a peacock tattoo, but don’t want to go colorful in your design? No worries! Even though the peacock is a colorful, vibrant bird, a peacock tattoo can still be eye-catching in black ink. However, without the color, the linework is going to take center stage with nothing to hide behind.
“Sensational line work puts brilliant curvature of wing and feather on display, often supported by dotwork shading, grayscale shading, or completely left alone for clean, flowing black line[s] against bare skin,”Next Luxury
While the peacock is one of the most beautiful birds in existence, it can be argued that their symbolism is what makes them truly special.
If you are looking for a meaningful tattoo that touches on significant themes such as everlasting life, enlightenment, protection, and wealth, take inspiration from the vibrant feathers and all-seeing eyes of the peacock.