Symbol Q & A

I get a lot of email with questions on a variety of symbols.  Some of it is very interesting, so I’ve decided to start sharing a select few.  Last names will be redacted for privacy and safety.  If I post your query here and you would like it removed, just drop me a line.

Questions, complains, and grammar corrections can be sent to symboldictionary AT gmail DOT com

Messages are sorted newest first.  If you don’t see your question here, check the comments below before submitting your own.

Note: I cannot address questions about the meanings dreams, unusual marks on the body, or coincidental occurrences.

Q  Heavy metal

Luis asks

Hi, i need to get some info on 3 symbols i medium i went to saw on visions. I tracked down them and i have them here:

I too have here a list with a lot of symbols from the same topic but i really don’t know what the topic is about:
Click to enlarge

can u point me in the right direction, maybe even give some explanation about the 3, especially the first one.

Thanks and God Bless you.


 The emblems you’ve linked are all alchemical notations.  The three specifically are for tin, antimony, and arsenic.  All are metals.  Antimony and arsenic are often used in alloys with tin or lead, and by themselves are poisons.  Hope this helps!


Q: The Celtic symbol for…

Paul writes:

Is there an actual Celtic symbol for “Wisdom”? It seems quite varied across different websites. Also, is there a Celtic symbol for “Warrior”, preferably “Young Warrior”?

I understand the symbols have limited or vague meanings which can represent a number of things but can you offer any advice or point me in the right direction.


Krystle writes:

Hey I am looking to get a tattoo of the celtic symbol that resembles inner strength, but every website I go to is showing a different design, which one is the actual design?


The short answer is that these symbols generally do not exist.  We get regular requests for symbols for motherhood, strength, sisterhood, healing, love, etc.  These are all ideas that would have been completely abstract and foreign to early Celts, at least in the context of symbol designs.

I suspect the notion that there are such symbols stems in part from modern usage of emblems and in larger part from the efforts of tattoo and jewelry artists.  Around the nineties there was an explosion of Celtic knot themed jewelry, each knot being mapped to a very specific modern idea.  (This wasn’t restricted to the poor Celts, there were also similar things done with Native American and other cultural symbols.)  To this day you can walk into any new age gift shop and buy a “celtic love knot” pendant, etc.  The reason these vary so widely in design and description, however, is that they are just invented bunk.

I’m trying not to be pedantic about it, but most of the requests we get are intended for tattoos, so I want to be as clear as possible before steering anyone toward an irreversible decision!  I cannot emphasize enough: if someone presents to you a pretty Celtic knot design as an emblem of love, friendship, etc., they are trying to sell you something.  Many folks are taking Celtic knot clip art books and assigning fanciful meanings to random designs that were originally used as filler ornaments on books and tombstones.

If you want a true Celtic emblem to honor a specific ideal or heritage, there are a few that could be used without too much stretching.  Celtic animal symbols can be used for their equivalent qualities – a boar for boldness or courage, etc.   Just keep in mind that many modern ideas won’t have any truly authentic emblem.  There just are not any genuine ancient Celtic symbols of brotherhood/sisterhood, mother & son, etc.  If you wish to assign a personal meaning to a design (as in, “I chose this beautiful Celtic knot to honor my Mother’s Irish heritage/the love I have for my sister/to remind me to be courageous/etc.”) , go for it- it will have your personal imprint and will be unique and meaningful to you.

So, keeping in mind that the Celts would never have used them in this fashion, some Celtic symbols and their meanings

Q: Ring with symbols

Hi , i have a golden ring quite long , but still i can not find out what is representing or what the symbols mean , Please anyone help …
on the one side there is hand with a heart inside the hand, on the other side there is an eye , in between all this there is some kind of symbol (like a book but not exactly ) with 2 swards going inside and letters F(left) T (right) and L above all this ….

Sounds like you have an Odd Fellows ring.  The “FTL” stands for friendship, truth, and love.   You can read a little about the heart in hand symbol here.  Wikipedia has a good overview of the Odd Fellows:

{ 177 comments… read them below or add one }

DeborahMacDonald September 2, 2015 at 8:44 am

I was shown a symbol of a fleurdelis on a pentagram. Do you know what it represents.?(a fleur de lis on a coin on a pentagram)


Jennifer September 5, 2015 at 1:00 pm

Without seeing it, it’s hard to say. Off the top of my head, though, it sounds like a novelty item, maybe a hoodoo talisman.


sherry August 5, 2015 at 11:38 pm

On an old print, along with the ‘copywrite’ (c in a circle) I see an ‘h’ inside a circle. What is this mean? I’ll send pic.


Jennifer August 7, 2015 at 1:36 pm

Hi Sherry, that may have indicated a Welsh copyright, but outside of that I’m mystified.


DS August 3, 2015 at 1:21 am

Is there a way I can remove a reply or post I made? Please?


Jennifer August 7, 2015 at 1:37 pm

Which post?


TimothySK July 1, 2015 at 1:49 pm

I just found very strange symbols on hidden door in old castle in Czech Republic, Europe. I was wondering if someone would know the meaning… I can send the picture on email.
Thank you.


Jennifer July 7, 2015 at 12:26 pm

Hi Timothy. That would be symboldictionary at gmail etc.


Jennifer April 14, 2015 at 9:19 pm

Hello! I’ve searched all over to find an answer to what I thought was a pretty simple question. I was wrong! My 5-year old son has drawn a circle with an ‘x’ in the middle, with dots in each of the 4 quadrants. Do you have any idea what it means? He seems to think it’s important, though he can’t remember where he has seen this symbol. Thank you! – Jennifer


Anonymous March 25, 2015 at 10:28 am

Hello Symboldictionary Team,

I admire this site. Its great, I use it very often. Yet I requested several times that you set up a twitter account. Apparently, my polite email request is being ignored and my requests here on the site are being deleted. A short, friendly reply would be very nice though. Nevertheless, I will keep admiring your site and using it as a reference for my studies and work.

Thanks for this site,



Jennifer April 1, 2015 at 3:29 am

Anonymous, I am not sure how to answer your question. Honestly, I really don’t see how a twitter account would offer any added value to the site.


Sara March 24, 2015 at 11:20 am


I came across a pendant with a symbol on it that I can’t seem to identify. I’ve searching for a similar symbol online but have not found it. Its a circle with the letter Y in the middle. However, the letter Y looks like a horse shoe with a tail in that it is curved. Another way to look at it is that it looks like that letter U with a small tail at the end and its fixed at the center of a circle. Any ideas what this symbols represents?


Satish March 4, 2015 at 4:30 pm

Hi there,
What is the symbol of reincarnation or rebirth?
Please tell me, because I want it as tattoo as a rememberance for my deceased child.
Thank you very much and be blessed!


Mathias February 6, 2015 at 1:30 pm

Hey, I was searching everywhere about the true meaning of the upside down All-Seeing Eye. Is used a lot on Left Hand Path doctrine and witchcraft, and Satanic Cults. They link it with Saturn and Gnosis too. I have my own interpretation, but could be great to have other perspective about it.
It’s the triangle with the eye, upside down.
Thanks a lot!


Amy Pike February 1, 2015 at 2:18 pm

can anyone tell me the meaning and source of the symbols on this please?


j rAYMER January 26, 2015 at 3:36 am

I have a charm of a right hand , palm up holding a flower. Is there any symbolism associated with this?


Miss Fontaine January 13, 2015 at 8:59 pm

Hello! I doubt this means anything in actuality, but could you tell me if this pendant has a meaning?


Jennifer January 18, 2015 at 11:31 am

Hi. That’s a pretty cool looking pendant, but I can’t say I’ve seen anything like it. It does remind me somewhat of some of the Icelandic bindrunes.


Maria December 23, 2014 at 11:00 am

Hello. I ‘m looking for the symbol of strenght or iron in alchemy , because I wanted a tattoo , and always find the symbol associated to man and Mars, and that’s not what I want. I read on some pages it is also its symbol , but maybe it’s true. Can anyone tell me it means?


Jennifer December 25, 2014 at 11:43 am

Hi Maria. The symbol for Iron in alchemy is indeed also the symbol for Mars. The specific emblem you linked isn’t familiar to me, but I’ll see if I can find a reference for you.


Gabriel C. December 23, 2014 at 12:23 am

Hi, here is my question. A friend of mine got a Vegvisir and an Aegisjalmur tattooed on his chest. What I want to know is if they can be worn at the same time without any sort of contradiction.


i am Will May 16, 2015 at 1:16 am

hello! Since nobody answered yet, i’ll give my opinion.
The Vegvisir and the Aegisjalmur compliment quite well together (in meanings).
Thus, they were used before icelandic used them, so maybe the meanings ”modernized” with time.


Isabella December 12, 2014 at 12:03 am

Hi, do you know any Eir’s symbol?


Wendy Keech November 11, 2014 at 6:09 pm

I need to know how or where to submit some symbols I have to see what they mean or where the originate from. Please advise.


Jennifer November 30, 2014 at 8:42 pm

Hi Wendy- just post them here. A link is fine or upload them to imgur or another site and post a link.


Turbo November 2, 2014 at 8:47 pm

Hi there i’m trying to find a genuine symbol for protection against dark entities/demons and Google just keeps giving me the same symbol from some tv show called supernatural??? Lol I don’t know whether it’s a real symbol or just some made up thing fir the show. Thanks so much I can’t wait to see what you guys have!!!


Raine January 5, 2015 at 9:26 pm
Johan October 18, 2014 at 5:29 am


I’m doing initial research for a new tattoo and came upon your site. I want it to be a protective and loving symbol for my children, the design will be the runes in the middle and their footprints around. Don’t really know what runes to use. Thinking perhaps of haven a Valknut in the middle and some runes around, or perhaps the Aegishjalmur both for their protective significance. Another idea is the a pretty large Algiz then the footprints. Do you have a suggestion?



Carrie September 23, 2014 at 11:06 pm

My 23yo brother was killed in a car accident on Christmas Eve. His birthday is coming up and I want Rio get a tattoo in memory of him. He was very proud of his Irish background. Even though his hair was a blondish brown, his facial hair was red. I always teased him about being a leprechaun.
I an trying to find something that symbolizes sibling love/bond, eternal life, etc. I’m also looking for a quote.


Pádraig January 9, 2015 at 7:34 pm

I personally tattoed a Celtic eternity knod in the shape of a heart, to remind me of all those who ever stood by my side in distress, never walked away from me when I was down, and ALWAYS were there for my no matter what. That sadly passed away, or chose a different path in life.
To me the “messy” looking parts of it represents the shit we fell into, but got back up from. The Heart represents the undying love I feel for the people. And whenever i look at it, i can still feel’em with me. Their protection, motivation, and legacy.
For me it’s the most valuable thing I have. Cuz through the messy parts, there’s a good heart, and like the knot; It will never end.

If you like the idea, send me an email and I’m more than happy to send you some pics.

As for the quote, why not go with an Old Irish Blessing;
“May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.”


sherry September 23, 2014 at 3:32 pm

like a ‘c’ in a circle, (copywrite) whats an ‘h’ inside a circle? (found on a picture)


Carol Stokes September 15, 2014 at 7:43 am

Hi, I have what appears to be a very old type of incense burner with symbols that go round in a wheel shape. I have looked everywhere but can’t find this symbol. Would you help please.


Jennifer September 18, 2014 at 6:42 am

Hi Carol, do you have a picture handy? If it is what i think it may be, there would be eight symbols? If so, have a look at the eight auspicious symbols of Buddhism and tell me if they resemble what’s on your burner.


brian September 14, 2014 at 11:45 pm

I found a strange occult symbol drawn on the wall of the house we rent. Only appeared recently. Can you recommend someone who could translate?


Jennifer September 18, 2014 at 6:42 am

Hi Brian, do you have a picture?


dame September 11, 2014 at 4:28 pm

Hi , i have a golden ring quite long , but still i can not find out what is representing or what the symbols mean , Please anyone help …
on the one side there is hand with a heart inside the hand, on the other side there is an eye , in between all this there is some kind of symbol (like a book but not exactly ) with 2 swards going inside and letters F(left) T (right) and L above all this ….


Jennifer September 14, 2014 at 6:20 pm

Sounds like you have an Odd Fellows ring. The “FTL” stands for friendship, truth, and love. You can read a little about the heart in hand symbol here. Wikipedia has a good overview of the Odd Fellows:


JessicaW August 16, 2014 at 11:39 pm

Hi. a friend of mine sent me a couple pictures of some symbols on a talisman of sorts and if you would allow me to email them to you i thought that maybe we can figure out the symbols on it? We haven’t seen symbols like it before and I am not sure where to begin looking so as to get an idea of what they are and what this object means or represents. would you be willing to help us in our search? Thanks in advance. In love and light.


Cole July 18, 2014 at 4:57 pm

So I found a symbol the other day that I’m curious about, the symbol is a circle, then it is surrounded by three dots making a triangle around it.

You can find it here, bottom middle.


Jennifer July 21, 2014 at 6:35 pm

To be honest that looks to me like something from a cartoon or television show,. Many of the symbols on that image are either very stylized or invented.


Evgeny July 7, 2014 at 8:05 pm

This site is awesome! Thank you very much for your work! I noticed that you don’t have any Slavic symbols. There are plenty of sites in internet with details. Most in Russian. If you ever think of adding this section I’d gladly help with translation.

Best regards


Jennifer September 18, 2014 at 6:47 am

Hi Evgeny. Generally those are still going in the Baltic/Slavic portion of the Norse/Asatru index. As I have little time to devote to new entries lately, it’s been slow going, and as these images share common ancestry they will probably stay there until the section is large enough to stand alone. I will add a jump page to the index, though. :)


Laura June 27, 2014 at 11:21 am

Hello! I have a friend who has a sword that has this strange engraving on it. I was wondering if there’s any way you could give me an idea of what it could represent.

He got it from a good friend of his that passed away. Any idea is greatly appreciated

Thank You!!


Jennifer July 7, 2014 at 1:18 pm

Hi Laura- my instinct here is that it’s just a decorative design. Seems to have a bit of a gothic appearance.


Sharon May 5, 2014 at 1:38 am

My wedding set has a cut out design that is like some designs that I’ve seen in either Ancient Greek, Roman or Egyptian architecture. It looks like sls continuosly connected if the “l” is the same height as the “s”. What is it called and does it have any meaning?


Jennifer May 8, 2014 at 5:27 am

Hi Sharon, sounds like a traditional Greek key pattern. It’s so called because it’s found on a lot of ancient Greek pottery and decorative art.


Douglas Quiñonez April 21, 2014 at 8:32 am

Hi… I am an archaologist from Guatemala, and despite the fact that I am a Mayanist, I have always been fascinated by Norse culture. My ancestors come from those lands and that is probably why I´ve been interested all my life on this subject.

Now… During an archaeological season we did two years ago on a site called Cancuen, a colleague of mine found an engraved symbol on a bone like material. It has an oval shape and the engraved symbol is identical to the ALGIZ rune…..

To this day, there is no mayan or mesoamerican symbol similar to this Algiz rune ..

Can you tell me if there are other cultures that used or use similar simbols besides the countries which used the Futhark on any of its variations? With this I dont mean evidence of viking presence (since they are the first europeans on America), I want to know if you have any knowledge of this simbol besides Norse use.

Douglas Quiñonez….
San Carlos University… Guatemala


Bruce April 4, 2014 at 8:00 pm

I was wondering if there’s any kind of “brotherhood” symbol in celtic/nordic beliefs. Thanks! :D


Kerri S. McIntire April 1, 2014 at 12:38 pm

Hello! I am creating a Tarot deck using images from cemeteries. Can you tell me if I’d be in trouble for copyright infringement if I used headstones with Fraternal Organization symbols on them? (Example: a masonic double eagle for The Two of Wands.)

Thank you for any info,

Kerri at Witch Hazel Press


Jennifer April 2, 2014 at 9:01 pm

Probably not, if you use older images and not any that are current trademarks for orgs.


Mitchell Dawson March 30, 2014 at 4:49 pm
Wanda March 28, 2014 at 9:16 pm

My father walks around with a bag of ‘something’ around his neck. It is a rather large cloth bag filled with ‘something’. I have asked him what the bag is for and he says it’s for his protection, but he won’t give any details. He also has a large collection of wooden sticks with very interesting and detailed carvings. He purchases them in Jamaica. Are these items a part of some religious practice?


Jennifer March 30, 2014 at 10:22 pm

Hi Wanda. The bag sounds like a gris-gris of some kind, but there are many folk traditions where such bag might be worn. Can you describe the sticks in any detail, or post a photo?


Brandon February 8, 2015 at 11:35 pm

Hi Wanda. My name is Brandon. I agree with Jennifer the bag does sound like a gris-gris, which In Vodoun, or Voodoo, a gris-gris resembles a charm or talisman which are kept for good luck or to ward off evil. So it would make sense that your father got it in Jamaica, since Jamaica is one of the places that Vodoun, or Voodoo derived from. Also the sticks you spoke of sound like Chien Tung Sticks which are a tool used by the Chinese for divination the carvings on them are called runes and each one represents a certain meaning, I hope that I was able to help you. Bright Blessing…


LuAnn March 8, 2014 at 11:31 am

Hi – I’m sorry if this isn’t the place to ask a question – I don’t see where I might do that.
Millennia ago, when I was getting my BA – I was in a philosophy class with a professor who used the symbol of a circle with a diagonal line through it in place of writing the word philosophy(er) so many times on the chalkboard. Now, of course, the symbol is universally known as a “no” sign, but it wasn’t so in the 1970′s. My question is this – does (did) that symbol stand in for any word one didn’t want to re-write a hundred times, or was (is) it strictly used in philosophical circles (no pun intended).
Thank you.


Jennifer March 9, 2014 at 11:45 pm

Hi LuAnn. It seems probable to me he was using the Greek letter Phi, which is the first letter of the word. It has been used as a shorthand in philosophy and also represents the golden mean. It typically is drawn with the line orieneted north/south, not diagonally, but while the zero sign has several uses as notation, that wouldn’t be one of them.

Hope that’s useful. :)


permisivna February 27, 2014 at 7:26 am

Does anyone know what it symbolizes halfsun with the rays? More precisely – it is the sun as a child’s drawing, but not shown all the sun (circle), but only the top half. The top half contains two concentric semicircles. External semicircle has the rays. Before 14 years I watched this sign on my arm. It was unexplained.


Jennifer March 21, 2014 at 3:50 pm

Hello- usually such a thing represents the rising or setting sun.


Bryce January 31, 2014 at 1:08 am

Today I saw some weird symbols and drew them down I’ve done a lot of research, however I’ve found nothing I need help finding the origin as soon as possible.


Jennifer February 1, 2014 at 2:44 am

Hi Bryce, do you have any pictures you could share?


niamh January 24, 2014 at 2:49 pm

can’t seem to find anything on this symbol, it doesn’t even seem to exist, when I search around all I find is stuff from DC comics and opel cars… but its not the same as either. Does anything even vaguely like this exist?


Jennifer January 25, 2014 at 5:12 am

Hi Niamh- I have never seen anything remotely like it, no. Where did you see it?


Luis January 23, 2014 at 1:59 am

Thanks it did really help and God Bless U


Bobby January 9, 2014 at 12:50 am

I have two Egyptian symbols I was wondering if you could tell me the meaning of?


Jennifer January 20, 2014 at 2:54 pm

Sure thing. Do you have images to share?


Kaylan January 7, 2014 at 7:46 pm

I have always had an open mind when it comes to religion & belief, but at the same time I have been dealing with the constant sense of not belonging or the feeling of being lost. Therefore, I’m wondering what are different things that symdolize: LOST, SEARCHING & NOT BELONGING.
Thank you,


Dionysus January 6, 2014 at 5:49 pm

A nice work, should be populated with more ancient greek symbols IMHO.

Try touching the twin suns of the columns,
the phallus,
the original alphabet,

for a start


Jennifer January 20, 2014 at 2:57 pm

It is in the works, eventually. Real life has been keeping me from expanding the dictionary as much as I would like, unfortunately.


Erica hejnar December 18, 2013 at 10:20 am

My sister in law received a purple bow tied around cloth with bones inside. I don”t know what that means and was hoping to get answers. I am worried for her safety


Pam December 18, 2013 at 7:57 am

What does it mean when all of a sudden your wristwatches start showing up when one isn’t looking for them ?


Castiel Keal December 17, 2013 at 5:24 am

I have a small question involving the television program named ‘Supernatural’. Suring this show they use a symbol, carved onto a necklace or tattooed onto the body.
The symbol is known as an Anti-Possession Symbol.

Im not entirely sure whether this is a real symbol with actual legends attacked to it or is it made up for the purposes of the television show.

Here is a link to symbol picture:


Jennifer December 29, 2013 at 4:51 pm

You are right to be skeptical- it is not a real symbol. What they’ve done is take an ordinary pentagram and place it inside a drawing of the sun. The pentagram is generally (with one notable exception) a human symbol, not a cosmological one. This is a fantasy image for television, which I suppose is better than misusing something genuine as some shows do.


Clarice November 15, 2013 at 11:35 am
Jennifer January 20, 2014 at 4:15 pm

Hi Clarice. I have seen that one floating around. I think it originated in some sixties/seventies clip art book as near as I can remember. I’m inclined to discount it utterly, as I’ve not encountered it on any Buddhist art or in any credible sources. Also, the moniker is quite silly, as the most easily recognized “Buddhist karma symbol” would be the wheel, which is also one of the most easily recognized religious symbols on earth.

Edited to add: A similar symbol does exist, but not in Buddhism: International banner of peace


Rosiland Reid October 25, 2013 at 11:47 am

Hello, I have a question. Why is the the symbol of the Eastern Star encircled? Thank you for your assistance.


B-Reft October 23, 2013 at 7:25 am


You got a great site. I just loved it! I was looking for a double-infinity symbol which is associated with revenge. Any idea?

Thanks in advance,

PS: Some of the links are leading to 404s. You can use a Google Webmasters account to that end.


Bruce October 20, 2013 at 7:52 pm

A cross in a circle with a circle in the center of it smaller circle in the center of it what does this mean


Joey April 12, 2015 at 7:28 pm

I believe that is the Celtic Cross, please correct me if I’m wrong.
It’s a symbol with a holy meaning. It symbolizes the bridge, or passageway, from Earth to Heaven.


Me October 17, 2013 at 6:45 pm

Hi, do you know what is the meaning of “Humanism” logo?
How about “One-legged Pointy Man” logo?
I just want to know the meaning and the philosophy of these symbols.
Thank u for willing to answer


Jennifer October 30, 2013 at 3:20 pm

The emblem is a little “human” shaped into the letter “H,” for Humanism. The canonical name is the “happy human.”


Gavin March 25, 2014 at 4:20 am

Hi Jennifer,
Out of curiosity I noticed that you wrote about a lot of the symbols which get thrown about these days are misguidings for tattoos. Do you know what sort if symbols the celts did use as tattoos and the meaning behind them?


Jennifer March 25, 2014 at 2:22 pm

There are a few drawings which accompany contemporary accounts of tattooed Celts, but the drawings seem very unreliable. There have been mummies recovered from bogs, but so far as I know, none have any preserved tattoos.

If I had to guess, I would say they would be more like the Siberian princess: or like Otzi (the Alpen ice man), or this guy: So, lines, dots, patterns, animals, grids, etc. Imagine similar designs with stags, birds, horses, & boars, etc., rather than reindeer. If you look at the older pictographic art from the neolithic periods you’ll see birds, horses, wagons, boats, plus lots of wheels, dots, spirals. I would expect these themes to carry over.

Probably items relating to dreams/visions or as directed by a seer. What I do not believe will ever be found on ancient bodies are tattoos of “celtic knots,” because those are all later (tenth century or later, probably even more modern than that, but I am away from my books) design concepts.


zoe October 16, 2013 at 10:08 am

Hello,Iamresearching asian symbols for ‘Home’ and wondered if you can point me in the right direction to find symbols and a descriptionof their meaning
Thanks for your help!


andrew green July 16, 2014 at 7:46 am

hi the artefact i own is a knight templar chalice with symbols going round the bowl i would like you to let me know what the symbols mean kind regards andy


Jennifer July 21, 2014 at 6:36 pm

Hi Andy, do you have pictures?


andrew green July 22, 2014 at 2:10 am

yes jennifer but i need your email to send them regards andy


Jennifer July 28, 2014 at 2:24 am

Hi Andrew. You can send it to symboldictionary AT


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