50+ Best Sword Tattoo Ideas And Brave Meanings Behind Them

sword tattoo
A sword tattoo may hide many more meanings than you think. Why? Explore our article to find out sword symbolism and the secrets behind it.

Getting a sword tattoo may be simple at first glance. But in reality, it has dozens of meanings and symbols. Researching everything by yourself, however, may be time and energy-consuming.

That’s why we have already done it and are ready to reveal all the secrets. Also, we have more than 1000 tattoo artists in our catalog that’ll make your ink special.

We’ll explain all the possible sword tattoo meanings, symbolism, and cultural and sword differences. But the most exciting part is more than 50 ink designs to inspire you.

βš” Note:
You can find even more designs in our new gallery. Find inspiration in the best sword tattoos from InkMatch tattoo artists!

Sword Tattoo: What Meaning Does It Hide?

What is the first association that comes to your mind when you see a sword? Is it a knight, samurai, Viking, or ninja turtle? Generally, almost every fairy tale hero, villain, or defender has a sword. 

Today this design is so romanticized, it mostly symbolizes strength, justice, and courage. These are, however, not the only meanings.

For example, Saint Michael the Archangel has a sword even in religion. In this way, it can be a symbol of protection and righteousness. Among Vikings, the sword can mean power and warrior spirit

Did you know that you can embrace strength and power without a sword? Find out how fallen angel tattoos may transform your appearance in our article.

But the unique and personal sword’s meaning is a personal transformation. A sword is necessary when you go to an unknown place full of danger. Such a meaning behind your ink will represent your readiness for challenges and changes.

sword tattoo

The Reason for the Sword Tattoo Popularity

Why did sword tattoos become so popular? The answer is in the history. Swords were the most popular weapon for centuries. This was the one method not only for making wars but for self-protection. 

A lot of prestigious writers and artists captured sword battles (and mentions in general) in their masterpieces. They created a classical picture of a brave prince with a sword rescuing a young princess. 

Vikings, knights, and samurais impacted the sword icon through their courageous feats. Every nation has its own type of warriors that make it proud of its history.

In addition, you probably heard about the Excalibur legend. Excalibur was the sword King Arthur could draw out of stone in his childhood. This myth makes sword symbolism even deeper and more mysterious.

An illustration of Excalibur, the sword that King Arthur was able to get out of the stone.

An illustration of Excalibur, the sword that King Arthur was able to get out of the stone.

What Symbols to Add to Make Your Sword Ink Outstanding

Even though a sword can have a deep meaning, adding different symbols will boost its visual appearance and transform the sense of your sword tattoo.

One sword is good, but two are even better.

βš” Crossed swords are a popular tattoo design that takes its roots far in history. Originally, it meant the war or a battle, since opponents used to cross their swords to start it. But today, it stays for readiness to fight any obstacle in your life.

🐍 Snakes used to seem fearless. Moreover, they shed their skin, which can represent life changes. Combined with a sword, these facts can have a sense of personal growth and transformation. 

Snakes are not the only ones that can add value to a sword. Let’s discover how a lion tattoo affects a man’s look with its sick design and deep meaning.

Another popular symbol is a dragon ?. Besides meaning strength, power, and defense, dragons can also mean balance and harmony. In this case, the sword will represent the sharp need to make a decisive choice. Such a design, in general, will reflect the pursuit of finding balance in life.

πŸ’ Flowers with a sword may seem a tricky design. While being soft and feminine, flowers represent the beauty of life. In its turn, the sword expresses strength and power. Such a tattoo idea literally stays for the possibility of strength and power coexisting with beauty and fragility.

Different Kinds of Swords and How They Affect Your Ink

Different cultures in different historical periods had their types of swords. They do not only have distinctive looks but meanings as well.

πŸ—‘ Longsword is the most versatile and classical weapon that comes to mind when you hear the word β€œsword.” As it was popular among European knights, the longsword usually represents honor and knighthood.

 β›© Katana is a traditional Japanese sword. Katana’s design and Asian vibe make this sword one of the most popular for a tattoo. Samurai culture fulfills the katana with such meanings as loyalty, discipline, and Bushido (warrior’s way).

πŸ‘¨πŸ»β€πŸŽ¨ Rapier. Musketeers are the first thing that you imagine talking about rapiers. These swords are symbols of elegance, honor, strategy, and nobility. Many writers and artists romanticized musketeers with their rapiers, filling them with deep meaning and aesthetics.

⚑ Viking sword. Grown muscular men with beards and armor β€” this is the typical image of the Viking. One of the attributes every Viking needs is a sword. In the sword tattoo, this kind of weapon represents power, defense, and heritage. Some people even consider that these swords may represent a connection with the Norse Gods.

Pay attention to the raven tattoo since its mysterious symbolism may add deep meaning to your ink. Dive in to explore the best ideas and designs in our article.

Offbeat Sword Tattoo Ideas To Get Inspired

No words, however, will describe the beauty of the best sword tattoos combined with various symbols. We prepared more than 50 different tattoo ideas, so it’s time for you to get inspired.

Crossed Swords

If you are ready to fight for your dreams, crossed swords are a must-have design for you. Its deep meaning will tell everyone you’re serious about your plans.

Sword With A Snake

The sword and the snake tattoo can be a brave reminder of some life-changing situation or event in your life. You can even add some elements to make it more memorable.

Dragon And A Sword

The dragon may seem scary at first glance. However, if you faced struggles in life and found harmony, such a tattoo, will serve you as a beautiful reminder of being grateful.

Sword And Flowers

You may find the sword and flowers incompatible symbols. However, they will perfectly suit both men and women who are sure that power and beauty can be the parts of one whole.

Other Badass Ideas

It’s almost impossible to get no inspiration from all the sword tattoo ideas above. But if you didn’t find your perfect design, we filled this section with the most exceptional inks.

What Body Parts Will The Sword Tattoo Adorn The Best?

Sword tattoos have an oblong form, so there are a few places they will suit the best to achieve the aesthetic look.

Arms are the perfect place for getting a sword tattoo. Shoulders and forearms are the most popular canvas for any kind of sword ink. So you can experiment with more simple sword tattoo designs or large ones.

Legs can be an appropriate place for a sword tattoo as well. Big areas will let you free your desires and come up with something badass. In addition, it is easy to cover your tattoo with shorts or pants when needed.

A back, however, will need your courage to get a bold sword tattoo. It’s hard to imagine such ink to look bad on the back. If you consider getting a sword tattoo with some additional symbol, think about your back as an ink place.

Even though a sword tattoo has a specific form, it doesn’t mean you can’t experiment with designs and come up with your unique placement.

Discover the best men’s stomach tattoo ideas to get the most aesthetic and outstanding look.
A tattoo pain map for the best experience
A tattoo pain map for the best experience

Final Thought

Even though the sword is a classic tattoo, that doesn’t mean it’s boring. Adding different symbols will transform the appearance and fill it with fresh meanings. 

Don’t be afraid to come up with your ideas and personal messaging. This will make your sword tattoo even more unique and outstanding. 

We hope our article encourages you to experiment with traditional symbolism like swords, dragons, flowers, and snakes; and with something bold and badass that will highlight your personality.


πŸ—‘ What Does a Sword Symbolize?

A sword tattoo gets inspiration from knighthood times. It symbolizes strength, power, and honor. In modern life, it can mean your readiness to fight obstacles.

βš” What Does the 3 of Swords Tattoo Mean?

Three sword tattoos can mean suffering and unexpected pain. If you depict them upside down, they stay for the opposite – relief after the painful situation and strength.

πŸ§”πŸ» What Does a Sword Tattoo Mean for Guys?

A sword tattoo reminds guys to stay brave and strong, and not to be afraid of life changes and obstacles.

πŸ›‘ What Does a Sword Pointing Down Symbolize?

A pointing-down sword tattoo is a symbol of honor. Since warriors used to point their swords down after the battle, this symbol can also stay for relief.


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