Loyalty is a virtue defined by the trust, faithfulness, support, and dedication a person displays towards another being, relationship, or community. Different cultures around the world have varying signs and symbols associated with loyalty. Some examples include the Claddagh ring, trapeze artists, certain flowers, and animals.
What’s a Symbol That Represents Loyalty?
While there isn’t one symbol that represents loyalty exclusively, there are several symbols are associated with this virtue, depending on the cultural beliefs and customs. Some symbols have been here since ancient times. At the same time, a few are relatively new and became popular due to literature, art, or movies.
For example, the trapeze artists symbolize trust and loyalty as they hold each other’s lives. They have come to represent loyalty and trust since Jules Leotard of France’s performance at the Cirque Napoleon (Paris) in 1859.
Flowers like forget-me-not symbolize love, loyalty, and trust. According to an old German folktale, a knight falls into a river when gathering dainty blue flowers for his lady.
He throws the flowers towards her when being swept away by the river currents and calls out, “Forget me not.” That’s how blue flowers got their name and began representing loyalty and steadfast love.
What are the Symbols of Loyalty?
Pikorua is a Māori symbol inspired by the pikopiko fern native to New Zealand. The design has figure eight in a double or triple twist. Figure eight symbolizes two people. The double twist is for loyalty in a community/ large group, and the triple twist symbolizes friendship and trust between cultures.
The Claddagh is an iconic Irish symbol where two hands hold a heart with a crown. It represents true love, loyalty, and trust. According to a legend, an Irish fisherman in the 17th century forged the ring for his lady love when he was captured by pirates and sold as an enslaved person. He went home years later and married her as she had waited for him.
European cities in the middle ages were walled and secured with locks on massive gates. Only trusted members were given the keys to unlock the gates. The keys became a sign of loyalty and trust over the years. The mayors offer a ceremonial key to guests of honor even today.
Chugi is a Japanese kanji symbol associated with loyalty. It’s one of the eight Samurai virtues from Bushido, which is their way of life. It’s a sacred symbol to the samurai warriors. The eight Bushido binds them.
Nyame Nti is an Adinkra symbol belonging to the Asante people from Ghana. It looks like a leaf or a plant. Nyame Nti translates to God’s grace or because of god. It implies the utmost faith, devotion, and loyalty people have toward God and consider that life is impossible without His blessings and provision.
Two Golden Fish
In Tibetan Buddhism, goldfish or Koi represent good fortune. Two goldfish symbolize a couple and their trust in each other to face life. It’s a common practice in China to gift ornaments decorated with goldfish as gifts to newlyweds.
The act of shaking hands to finalize a deal comes from ancient Greece. It’s a symbolic ritual where a person extends their right hand to show they’re not holding a weapon and want to discuss. It’s a sign of trust between two parties. The handshake implies that they will be loyal to the terms of the agreement/ deal.
The Color Blue
Blue is the color of the sky and sea. Since both are permanent fixtures, the color is associated with trust and loyalty. The term ‘true blue’ comes from late medieval England. The people of a town in Coventry used poisonous berries to dye fabric in a blue that would never fade.
What Animal Is a Symbol of Loyalty?
More than one animal symbolizes loyalty. The symbolism is subjective, as each animal is associated with more than one quality.
Dogs are considered the most loyal animals due to selective breeding over the centuries. Dogs are highly dedicated to their humans. These domestic animals represent loyalty in almost every culture. However, people with dog spirit animals should first be loyal to their true selves instead of others, as there can be issues with misplaced loyalty.
Eagles are monogamous birds and have only one mate throughout their lifetime. They are committed to defending their young and are loyal to their families. Eagle is one of the spirit animals for people with Scorpio as their zodiac sign. It means they should take time and carefully consider who their ideal partner will be before committing.
Elephants are a sign of loyalty and stability. They don’t break away from the herd. The gentle giants wait for their family members when traveling. They also have long memories and will never forget an acquaintance, even after years. The elephant spirit animal refers to family loyalty (though the definition of family depends on you).
What Symbol Means Love and Loyalty?
Love can be a complex emotion to describe. Thankfully, many symbols convey love and loyalty between two people.
Symbols of Love and Loyalty
The Ankh symbol is an ancient Egyptian symbol of fertility and the union of a man and woman. Another symbol of love and loyalty is the Celtic lover’s knot. It comes in different designs and is gifted to a lover as a promise of love and a sign of loyalty.
There are several animals that signify love and loyalty as well, including swans and doves. Swans mate for life, and two doves represent a couple or faithfulness. Also, Greek, Roman, and Hindu cultures consider these birds a sign of love and loyalty.
Many people use symbols to express their feelings or define themselves. From tattoos to ornaments to jewelry, loyalty, trust, love, and friendship can be symbolized in a language of your choice.