Floral designs are popular with female tattoo enthusiasts the world over however one of the less commonly requested designs has to be the poppy tattoo but this is actually a very beautiful image with an interesting history that is also highly symbolic. For centuries flowers have represented the earth and nature personified with their succinct life cycles that go from birth to death, through procreation and renewal. Around the world, different flowers have differing meanings from culture to culture however many white flowers are associated with purity or innocence while red ones signify passion or Christ’s blood.

Thanks to its distinctive open cup-like shape and the submissive part it plays in fertilization, a poppy tattoo also symbolizes all things feminine. The poppy and its close relative the anemone are more commonly associated with death and sleep having symbolized the fall of soldiers since the first World War. Perhaps one of the best known poppies is the Opium Poppy which in itself symbolizes sleep and oblivion.

This species of flower can actually be traced much further back and according to Greek mythology, they were formed from Aphrodite’s tears that fell as she mourned Adonis upon his death. Another legend from popular folklore told of fairies sleeping within the anemone’s closed petals and waking as they opened in the morning light. In medieval times this flower was believed to be able to protect against evil and used accordingly as a symbol of protection.

There are a great many ideas available online for a poppy tattoo so if you need any inspiration then check out some of the websites and galleries available. Choosing any floral design can be quite daunting due to the vast symbolism behind each flower. Many flower tattoos can take on differing meanings according to the color or surrounding images so it is worth looking into the language of flowers in more detail. However, whatever design you choose make sure it means something personal to you. It should ideally deliver a positive message, after all flowers have been used to comfort the dying and heal the sick for centuries, so use your body art to bring love and joy to someone too.

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