One of the most popular tattoo design choices for women, the Butterfly reveals the feminine influence in tattoo culture. Generally speaking, butterflies are an overwhelmingly female tattoo design. Because of the butterfly’s short life span, many ancient peoples saw it as emblematic of the impermanent. It’s physical beauty and its fluttering from flower to flower seeking nectar have made it synonymous with the more unstable and superficial aspects of the human soul.
Butterflies taste with their feet.
- Butterfly goddesses have emerged in places as far apart as Minoan Crete and Toltec Mexico. Some of these deities were believed to be the personification of certain butterflies, and were regarded as symbols of beauty, love, flowers, and the spirits of the dead.
A group of butterflies is sometimes called a flutter.
- They were also looked upon as the patrons of women who died in childbirth and warriors who fell in battle. At the other end of the spectrum, one of the Butterfly deities in ancient Mexico was the goddess of war and human sacrifice.
Their eyes are made of 6,000 lenses and can see ultraviolet light.
- In Greek mythology, Psyche was represented in art with butterfly wings. It’s all about the airborne soul -and the caterpillar emerging from its cocoon, transformed from an earth-bound to an aerial entity, is the classic metaphor. To the Greeks, a human soul emerged each time a butterfly emerged from its cocoon.
There are 165,000 known species of butterflies found on every continent except Antarctica.
- Diverse cultures looked upon the Butterfly as a symbol of transformation, regeneration and flight. Souls were carried by the Butterfly from earth to heaven, or in some cases were believed to be the souls themselves returning to earth.
Many adult butterflies never excrete waste – they use up all they eat for energy.
- So, the Butterfly is not entirely the exclusive domain of the feminine. The Roman Emperor, Augustus, took it as his personal symbol, and the warrior priests of the Mexican Popolucas peoples sported the Butterfly as a motif on their breastplates. Their Butterfly was also the symbol of fire.
Despite popular belief, butterfly wings are clear – the colors and patterns we see are made by the reflection of the tiny scales covering them.
- In Japan, the Butterfly, ready to fly after its long spell in the cocoon and spreading its brand new wings, is a popular symbol for young girls. It represents emerging beauty and grace, with the added notice to regard change as joyful, not traumatic.
Butterfly wings move in a figure “8” motion.
- Likewise, the Native American honours the Butterfly as an emblem of guidance in change. In China, it is still a popular symbol of marital bliss and conjugal harmony.
Butterflies vary in size – the largest species may reach 12 inches across, while the smallest may only be half an inch.
- The butterfly symbol was displayed as both a Clan or Family crest and as an emblem on the armor of samurai warriors. The butterfly was favored for the dual nature of its delicate and elegant symmetry, and its transcendent evolution from a lowly caterpillar to noble insect, carried aloft on radiant wings of colour and beauty.
Some butterfly species lay their eggs on only one type of plant.
- The Taira, betrayed and greatly outnumbered, were annihilated by the Minamoto clan at the great naval battle of Dan-no-ura in 1185. The surviving nobles committed suicide by jumping into the sea, a noble and graceful death considered preferable to a life in shame after an ignominious defeat.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar was no joke – the first meal after a caterpillar hatches is usually the eggshell from which it has just emerged.
- According to one legend, upon leaping to their deaths in a watery grave, their released souls fluttered heavenward as butterflies. The Taira went down fighting, and so earned themselves much admiration as befitting brave and doomed warriors in the grandest of Japanese traditions.
In some areas, the number of feeding caterpillars on plants is so great that you can actually hear them munching. Thus, manners are not important in butterfly society.
- Delightful, magical and transformational, the Butterfly reminds its admirers of the mystery of nature and the richness of human imagination.
The process by which a caterpillar magically transforms into a butterfly, aka metamorphosis, is completed in 10 to 15 days, depending on the species.
- Butterflies are one of the most fascinating and endearing gifts from Nature. Even though they have a short-lived life, their existence is full of beauty and metaphorical lessons. For example, from being a not so loved caterpillar to being a colorful butterfly, the creature underwent a drastic change that can serve as metaphor in peoples’ lives.
Butterflies are essentially cold-blooded.
- Butterfly Tattoos have a lot of meanings depending on what perspective you will view it. For example, Christians consider these winged creatures as a representation of Jesus’ resurrection and his flight to heaven. In this case, we can simply say that it is a representation of rebirth and resurrection.
Skipper butterflies fly so fast they could outpace a horse, but most butterflies fly at 5 to 12 miles per hour (8 to 20 kilometers per hour).
- The thing about this 3D butterfly tattoo is it gives you the illusion of movement. The technique used by the tattoo artist involves angle and shadowing. These factors give the seer of the tattoo an impression that the butterfly is flying above the skin. These butterfly tattoos are perfect for those who are tired of the simple and plain style.
Butterflies have a long, tube-like tongue called a proboscis that allows them to soak up their food rather than sip it.
- One of the most famous strain of butterflies used as a tattoo is the monarchs. These insects come with huge orange wings with black margins.They are mostly seen on tattoos because of their distinct color and attention-seeking wing span.
Males drink from mud puddles to extract minerals that aren’t available in flowers. This behavior is known as “puddling.”
- Conservative women who do not want to make their tattoos visible immediately put these designs on their feet. Foot tattoos that are composed of butterflies symbolize the freedom of going anywhere, making the wearer of these tattoos free-willed and carefree.
Scientists thought butterflies were deaf until the first butterfly ears were identified in 1912.
- The warmest and most serene color is blue, making it a favorite among girls who underwent a heartbreak or those whose personality is calm and never shaken. If you happened to get this butterfly tattoo, it only shows that your personality enjoys solitude and peace.