A lion tattoo generally symbolizes pride, virility and masculinity. However, the lion is also associated with the zodiac symbol for Leo. The Lion of Judah is a popular lion tattoo.
Many people get tattoos of male lions' heads, which are often associated with royalty. This is particularly true if the lion has a crown on his head. Some people get lion tattoos to symbolize protection, especially over scars.
Concerning Leo tattoos, the sign is associated with powerful, creative and confident people who make good leaders. Leo is a fire sign in the Western zodiac, so such lion tattoos are often combined with flames.
The Lion of Judah has Biblical origins, being the symbol of the ancient Israelite tribe of Judah. This lion is pictured with a crown on its head and carrying a flag. Some tattoos have green, yellow and red stripes incorporated into the flag. These are the colors of the Ethiopian flag. The Lion of Judah has been adopted by the Rastafarian religion.
A full-body image of a male lion standing on his hind legs is known as the rampant lion. It appears on several flags, including those of Scotland and Flanders in Belgium. The rampant lion is also known as the Celtic lion. In Celtic lore, the lion is considered dangerous but also symbolic of wisdom and virility. Many people get rampant lion tattoos as nods to their Celtic heritage.
Some women get lioness tattoos to symbolize protection and feminine bravery.