Vesica Pisces (Ichthys, Jesus Fish, Mandorla)

This symbol, called the vesica pisces (piscis) or “Jesus fish,” has an unusual history. Used almost exclusively today to denote membership in the Christian religion, the symbol once held a very different meaning (even to the early Christians who adopted it). The word usually found inscribed within, IXOYE (Ichthus), is Greek, meaning fish. The emblem became significant to Christians after St. Augustine, who extracted the word from the acrostic prophecy* of the Erythraean Sibyl, and applied the kabbalistic technique of notarikon (acrostic) to the word to reveal “Jesus Christ, God’s son, savior.”

The custom of early Christians to communicate by drawing a portion in the dust was carried over from the practice of the ancient Pythagoreans, who discovered the shape’s unique properties and made it an important part of their teachings. In earlier times, this glyph was associated with the Goddess Venus, and represented female genitalia. Early depictions of Christ depict him as an infant within the vesica (In this context, it is usually referred to as a mandorla, meaning ‘almond shaped.’), which represented the womb of Mary, and often, the coming together of heaven and earth in the body of Jesus (part man, part god). As such, it is also a doorway or portal between worlds, and symbolizes the intersection between the heavens and the material plane.

The shape of arches in Gothic architecture is based on the vesica. The shape of the vesica pisces is derived from the intersection of two circles, the Pythagorean “measure of the fish” that was a mystical symbol of the intersection of the world of the divine with the world of matter and the beginning of creation.

To the Pythagoreans, the whole of creation was based on number, and by studying the properties of number, they believed one could achieve spiritual liberation. The vesica pisces was the symbol of the first manifestation, the dyad (reflection) that gaves birth to the entire manifest universe. Within the vesica can be found the triangle, the tetrad, the square, the pentacle, and many more polygons, making the vesica a true symbolic womb. Adding a third circle creates a triquetra representing the trinity; continuing the pattern generates an image of the “flower of life” or “fisherman’s net.”

Curiously, the New Testament story of the loaves and fishes secretly reveals the geometric formula for the fish shaped device, as does the story of the miraculous catch:

“Simon Peter went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three: and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken. (John 21:11) ”

The construction of the vesica is also detailed in the Parable of the net. (Mathew 13:47-53)

This is little remarked upon by Bible scholars and usually ignored by Christian bible interpreters. You can read more about the hidden biblical symbolism of the Vesica Pisces here.

glossarymandorla spacer sdurerpisces
Saint pictured within a mandorla Concealed vesica pisces in an Albrecht Durer engraving

* According to St. Augustine: “the verses are twenty-seven, which is the cube of three. For three times three are nine, and nine itself, if tripled, so as to rise from the superficial square to the cube, comes to twenty-seven. But if you join the initial letters of the five Greek words which mean, ‘Jesus Christ the Son of God, the Saviour,’ they will make the word, that is, fish, in which word Christ is mystically understood, because he was able to live, that is, to exist, without sin in the abyss of this mortality as in the depth of waters.”

See also: Anchor cross, ichthys wheel

Related Symbols:
Sheela-na-gigFlower of life

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JO July 9, 2018 at 7:48 am

VESCICA PISCES………IS part of THE REPRESENTATION OF ELOHIM ALPHA-OMEGA. This superconscious being, one level above the archangelic level is one of those beings ascending this universe. She is the stargates that allow an ascending entity from one level of reality to the next. This is about the only information about her, that I can get.


Anonymous October 23, 2016 at 1:04 am

We appropriated the pagan symbol for female occult genitailia?

Good! The new meaning is much better!

Prism November 29, 2017 at 11:43 am

ha, please…original meaning is way better, as is the case with everything Pagan that Christians ripped off. what makes the new meaning so much better? and what the heck is “female occult genitalia”…is that as opposed to…non-occult genitalia? like most people who try to argue things like this, you clearly don’t even fully understand what you’re talking about.

Prism August 10, 2016 at 5:05 pm

here’s a little bit more information about this symbol’s true meaning and origins. and save the “amens” for church, people, this is no place to preach or testify.

Citation please? February 15, 2017 at 10:32 pm

I see zero citations on that page.

Daniel johnson June 28, 2016 at 2:53 am

This symbol was in my site wherever I went I could not escape it I thougit I was going crazy three days ago there was a rainbow around the sun and a cloud circle formed to create the vesica Pisces symbol above my head .something very big is about to happen . Christ is my lord I am a child of God .if SOMEONE has any info or similar things happen let me know please let’s talk I can see for miles.m y birthday is march thirteenth nineteenseventyone .ten twenty two p.m


Wieweet October 3, 2014 at 2:19 pm

The “vessica pisces” is also the center of the Soefi-symbol for twin flames. One soul divided in two, a male part and a female part. Two rings always connected, sometimes further away, that makes the “vessica pisces” bigger, sometimes very near, with a small v.p. Jesus of Gamala and Mary Magdalene were twin flames, from their first incarnation in Egypt (as Tuthmose II and Hatshepsut/queen of Sheba>>>Abesh>>Abbesinia>>Ethiopia) in 16th century BC untill last incarnation 1959 AD the Netherlands>>Kampereiland

Marie-Louise May 22, 2017 at 9:25 am

Dear Wieweet
What Incarmations did Jesus and Magdalene have in the Netherlands?

Anonymous October 16, 2017 at 3:42 pm

Before Egypt in Babylonian it was Semiramis and Tammuz – the mother/wife and child of Nimrod.

Lew White July 24, 2012 at 12:01 pm

Syncretism is employed to merge religious beliefs through words, symbols, rituals, and ideas. The outcome of this is control through “strongholds” of thought, thus imprisoning the victims of the manipulated “mystical” (occult) knowledge.
Gnostics were very successful at crafting strongholds, and the symbols they used are commonly accepted by the world today. Alexandria, Egypt’s Catechetical School hatched the primary ideas embraced by Christianity, which is why so much Paganism is to be found in its practices. The original followers of Yahusha still abide on the Earth, teaching Torah to the nations.

Anonymous April 29, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Amen halleluyah

Jo the Nazarene April 9, 2015 at 9:40 am

YevHah, bless you, my Brother.

donald borgan June 16, 2011 at 11:25 am

I am a pisces mar 20 1978. And these thing be in my mind. I use to think was cra

Anonymous March 20, 2017 at 2:38 am

U r not the cray cray! Only bray Bray!! My brother

Emily Hare September 7, 2009 at 5:48 am


I wonder if Icould possibly repoduce your image of the fish shaped Vesica for my MA dissertation. Obviously, I will fully acknowledge you as a source.

I would be very grateful if you could get back to me as soon as possible, because I have to hand it in tomorrow and didn’t realise I had to get permission to use images from the web.

Many thanks

Emily Hare

Peter Treacy June 24, 2009 at 6:13 am

My belief is that Christ was not just a birth below but above as well as the aspect of the ancient truth that as it is above, so it is below. The Son was born in God the Father’s subconcious mind, a mental Garden of Eden above to be the seeded light and inspiration of man’s inner imaged consciousness below. The two interprenatiing circles of consciousness represent a blending of a male God the Father and female God the Mother to give birth.

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