Chinese Writing Tattoos

Chinese Writing Tattoos
The allure of Chinese tattoos lies in their unique beauty, as well as the legends associated with them. Along with the commonly used symbols like dragons and phoenix, Chinese letters have also gained much popularity in the world of tattooing.
ThoughtfulTattoos Staff
Last Updated: Jun 20, 2018
Tattooing is an ancient practice, though its popularity has increased manifold in the recent times. It is a form of body art that can be permanent or temporary. Permanent tattoos are created by inserting ink into the deeper layers of the skin.
Kanji with translation
Chinese symbols and letters are preferred for tattooing, not only for their exotic look, but for the fact that only a handful can understand their meaning. This makes them somewhat more special and mysterious.
Red tribal dragon
Like the Chinese dragon tattoos, Chinese letters, with their eye-catching styles and forms have also captivated the tattoo lovers. While selecting a particular Chinese writing tattoo, the most important thing to be considered is the type of writing style.
Chinese Script
Learning Chinese
The Chinese language has almost 80,000 characters, but most of them are rarely used today, as knowing a few thousands of them are enough for basic literacy.
Generally, each character of the Chinese language stands for an entire word, and they are traditionally read from top to bottom, and from right to left. However, in modern China, the characters are read horizontally from left to right.
There are basically two different styles of Chinese writing, Kanji and Hanzi. In the Kanji style, a single character can be used to mean an entire concept or idea. Kanji is actually a Japanese word that refers to 'Han Characters'. Han was an imperial dynasty that ruled China from 206 BC to 220 AD.
Tattoo on back side
So, kanji can be termed as an adaptation of the Chinese characters into the Japanese writing system, which encompasses around 50,000 characters. These are the most commonly used characters for making tattoos.
On the other hand, Hanzi encompasses the traditional Chinese characters used in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Macau. Many Chinese communities living outside China also use the hanzi writing style, which includes approximately 47,000 characters.
But if you know 3,000 to 4,000 characters, it is more than enough to read and write the Chinese language properly. In 1970, the Chinese government made an attempt to simplify the Chinese characters in an effort to increase the rate of literacy. This is known as the simplified Chinese, which is used in China, Singapore, and Malaysia.
Tattoo on neck
So, if you want to get a Chinese writing tattoo, first of all you have to decide on an appropriate writing style.
Chinese Script Tattoos
The Calligrapher
If you have chosen a particular writing style, you can find a wide range of characters with their characteristic graceful and extraordinary strokes.
But remember to do proper research regarding the meaning of the different symbols, as there have been instances of tattoo mishaps. So, make sure that the tattoo artist knows the meaning and the significance of the Chinese character/characters you have chosen for tattooing.
Do not alter the order of the characters, as a little alteration can change the meaning altogether. Chinese writing tattoos look stunning, especially if arranged from top to bottom.
The most preferred Chinese writing tattoos are, the symbol for love, faith, hope, strength, happiness, peace, and friendship. Chinese symbols for dragons, phoenix, and angels are also witnessing a tremendous surge in their popularity.
The symbols used for Chinese zodiac signs, like the rat, ox, dragon, tiger, rabbit, snake, and rooster are also widely used for tattooing. Some people prefer simple tattoos that include one or more Chinese letters, while others like a combination of Chinese letter tattoos and other famous tattoos, like dragons, tigers, or cherry blossoms.
Zodiac symbol calligraphy dog
Zodiac symbol calligraphy horse
Zodiac symbol calligraphy monkey
These tattoos can be used to adorn any part of the body, including the arms, legs, back, and the neck. Chinese writing tattoos are mainly cherished by tattoo lovers for their unique and charismatic look.