Daffodil Tattoos: Symbolism, Meanings & More

Daffodil Tattoos: Symbolism, Meanings & More

Daffodils are a beautiful flower that symbolizes rebirth and a new beginning because they are some of the first flowers to bloom when spring arrives, demonstrating the end of the winter months.

What is the History of Daffodil Tattoos?

The daffodil flower has the Latin name “Narcissus”, which can tell us a little bit about the history and mythology behind this bloom. It is believed that this flower gets its name from the son of the river god, Narcissus, who was revered for his beauty but who was also consumed by it. 

There are many different stories about what happened to Narcissus but one includes him becoming obsessed with his own reflection in a river and nymphs transforming him into the daffodil as a punishment for his vanity.


Other versions include him drowning in a bid to capture his own reflection and then people naming the flowers that grew along the river after him.

The daffodil has a rich history in England, where it is also called a “lent lily” as the time that the flower blooms often falls within the period of lent in Christianity (between Ash Wednesday and the Easter period). 

This bloom is also the national Welsh flower, as its appearance happens to coincide with St. David’s day (the patron saint of Wales).

In Eastern culture this flower represents good fortune, good luck and prosperity as they appear around Chinese New Year. So, if you are in China and your daffodils bloom exactly on Chinese New Year you are said to have luck for the entire year. 


Throughout history, unlike many other flowers and plants, the daffodil has not been used in traditional medicines and treatments and the reason for this is that the flower is actually poisonous to humans! You can, however, buy daffodil oil, which is said to promote sleep and relaxation but it should be used very carefully.

Despite being one of the most recognizable flowers across the globe, daffodil tattoos are sadly not that popular and pale in comparison to other recognizable flowers such as roses. However, as roses become too abundant in the world of tattooing it is likely that we will see a rise in other recognizable flowers such as the daffodil.


What Do Daffodil Symbolize?

Although they may appear simple at first glance the daffodil actually has a complex and rich history, giving it a myriad of meanings. The fact that the flower blooms at the dawn of spring means that it is associated with all of the meanings given to flowers that bloom at this time.

For example, daffodils symbolize rebirth, new beginnings and salvation due to their timing and the western world’s association of this time with Christianity, superficially the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. This also means that this particular flower has come to symbolize joy, happiness and faith.

Other, more general associations with Christianity and the idea of salvation, have also been attributed to the daffodil such as good luck, prosperity, forgiveness and even the idea of memory. 

More generally, the flower symbolizes spring and the coming of warmer months, and hence the ending of the cold winter months. This brings the idea of a bright future and prosperity, which is a symbolism very much seen in eastern culture in connection to this flower.

Despite actually being poisonous to humans, this flower holds a lot of positive and uplifting symbolism connected both to faith and secular society. 


What Do Daffodil Tattoos Mean?

Just like most other flowers, there are several colors of daffodil, each of which carries its own particular meaning. Although the flower in general celebrates spring, faith and new beginnings the specific colors each also have their own, more specific meanings.

Perhaps the most iconic and known version of this flower is the yellow daffodil. This particular color holds its meanings in its color and radiates happiness, joy and optimism. This is reflected in the joyous and bold color of the flower itself.

If you want to wish a loved one good luck or want to cheer someone up then gifting them a bunch of yellow daffodils is the perfect way to do so!


Next, there is the white version. White flowers typically mean purity and innocence and this flower is no exception to the rule. If you, or someone you know, is having a wedding at the end of winter or the beginning of spring then adding white daffodils is the perfect way to make your wedding extra special.

Additionally, white flowers can be used to celebrate the birth of a new baby, and can be a great way to bring the parents a little extra joy at such a happy time.

The slightly bolder orange version of this flower brings with it slightly bolder meanings as well. Enthusiasm and courage, as well as friendship, is symbolized by the orange color. 

Pink daffodils, although created, are used to symbolize platonic love, making them a great choice to give to friends and family.


Where Do Daffodil Tattoos Usually Go?

You can choose to get a single stem tattoo or a bunch of daffodils for your tattoo, meaning that you can adapt the style to fit anywhere on your body. However, one of the most popular places for both versions is on the arm. This is for both genders and the striking figure of the tattoo matches this area perfectly.

Typically the daffodil is depicted standing straight up, meaning that it is better suited to areas such as the leg or arm rather than the ribs.

Characteristics and Styles of Daffodil Tattoos

Daffodils are most widely recognized for their bright yellow hue, meaning that the tattoos are fantastic when done in color. Even though the shape of the flower is instantly recognizable, the color adds a whole other level to the meaning behind the tattoo, given its joyous connotations.

You can choose a bold outline with a strong pop of yellow (or orange or pink) or you can choose a more delicate fine line bunch of daffodils to suit your personal style and chosen meaning.


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