One of the most popular designs around today has to be Irish tattoos for men. Not only do they look attractive but they are among the most symbolic designs around and many men with Celtic origins – the Scots, Welsh and Irish– enjoy sporting these as a way of paying homage to their heritage. Some choose these designs for religious as well as historical reasons particularly the Celtic cross which appeals to many people everywhere. This is a beautiful adaptation of a universally recognized symbol and many celebrities including Robbie Williams and Justin Timberlake have been sporting Celtic cross tattoos for years endorsing this design even further.

Irish Tattoos For MenThere are several versions of the Celtic cross but the biggest attraction overall is the unique design which makes it stand out from other more traditional crosses like the Christian version or crucifix. It is most commonly portrayed as a circle around the central point where the horizontal and vertical parts meet and in some designs a Celtic knot replaces the circle where both parts intersect. Alternatively, another variation of this Irish tattoo for men sees a series of these knots surrounding the cross at its border or the knot work can sometimes be used to decorate the inner section of the cross. These are generally done in simple black ink or in a vibrant Celtic green but are visually stunning in either. While men were the first to sport this trend in tattoos, more recently women also seem to be attracted to the Celtic Cross and Tribal images too. The curvy, elaborate lines used in this delicate design make it more feminine than the traditional cross but it can also look quite pretty so it is unsurprising this design now appeals to so many women.

These popular designs are more than just a pretty image as they are rich in symbolism too. The Celts were originally a pagan tribe so this was not associated with the Christian faith which actually came around much later when the gospel was introduced to Ireland. According to legend St Patrick was shown a standing stone marked with a circle that was considered to be sacred. He blessed it and this was believed to be a Celtic cross so it was at this point that the two faiths – Gospel and Celtic beliefs – were linked thanks to this special symbol. The structure of the cross was always the main feature if you trace back the original design, as opposed to the knot work integrated in most modern designs. Initially the cross was equal in both width and length and this represented the four plains on which the four elements were symbolized. Irish Tattoos For MenThese were of course water, fire, earth and air but there was also a circle in the centre which signified the never ending cycle of life or eternity. It was this inner circle in the middle that made the Celtic cross distinct from the regular cross design.

In modern society it is the knots interwoven throughout the borders of the cross that form the most distinguishing feature of these Irish tattoos for men. The strands connecting the Celtic knots are infinite and designed with no visible start or end point. This also signifies eternal life while the knot itself represents the union of the spiritual world with our physical one. Perhaps this is one reason Celtic designs appeal to so many in our modern world as they can represent both spiritual and more traditionally Christian ideologies. Over the years, artists have allowed artistic expression to influence the original design and both sections are no longer of equal length vertically and horizontally. However, they still allow one to make a statement about one’s faith today while retaining the allure of a civilization long passed.

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