The Arabic language has been around in one form or another since the 6th century, and has evolved over generations into the modern version of the language that is now spoken by about 420 million native speakers found all over the world, but are concentrated in the Middle East, as well as North and East Africa. As ancient as this language is, the art of tattooing has been around for at least 5,200 years, making Arabic seem young in comparison.
With both tattooing and Arabic having been around for so long, and about 30% of people worldwide having tattoos, it makes sense that some of them already have, or are considering getting, an Arabic tattoo, which is what we are discussing today. For those of you out there who wish to have some some Arabic writing, either by itself, or incorporated into an image, our article today will help you out with some ideas. If Arabic is a language you’d like to learn, this course on Arabic for beginners will get you started, and if you prefer to go it alone, this course on teaching yourself a foreign language will help you save money by learning solo.
Ideas for Arabic Tattoos
The Arabic alphabet really lends itself to tattoos, as the letters contain many elegant and dramatic curves and swoops, and may be one of the more aesthetically pleasing writing systems out there, so you’ve made a good choice. To study this alphabet more closely, check out this site that has the full Arabic alphabet on display.
- Someone’s Name
The old tattoo standby of getting your name, a family member’s name, or the love of your life’s name forever etched into your skin is doubly smart when doing it in Arabic. First off, like we said before, Arabic letters are beautiful, and a monument to your love written in a gorgeous Arabic script is both romantic and exotic. The other side of getting this kind of tattoo is that if you and your true love part ways, instead of it reading “Lauren” in English, because it says something most people don’t understand, you can just tell them it means “Peace”.
- Peace and Love
One of the more popular Arabic designs, this tattoo incorporates letters into a picture. This tattoo contains the words “peace” and “love” written in Arabic, along with the profile of a dove, a symbol of both peace and love. This smaller design is great for the wrist or ankle, but would work anywhere, really.
- “This Too Shall Pass”
The origin of this ancient phrase is unknown, but thought to have come about from the writings of medieval Persian Sufi poets, and means that all material things, both physical and abstract, good and bad, are temporary. Getting this phrase as a tattoo is meant to infuse strength into its owner, and is particularly popular on arms and shoulder blades.
This small and simple design, like the previous one, is a source of strength for those who wear it, and would work on pretty much any part of the body.
- Words That Form a Heart
Getting a tattoo in Arabic that also is in the shape of a heart not only gets in the Arabic message you wanted, but also makes it look pretty by incorporating a heart design. You can make the words form any shape, really, but the heart seems to be one of the most popular.
- Shoulder or Collar Bone Tattoos
These elongated parts of the body lend themselves nicely to long lines of script. If you have a particular Arabic phrase that is important to you, but aren’t sure where it could fit, consider these parts of the body. The collar bone would be particularly painful, as there is no fat separating the skin from the bone, but it is an attractive part to have a tattoo on.
- Lines From a Poem
Getting tattoos of lines from a favorite song or poem is quite popular, but getting these lines in Arabic script lend a bit of exoticism to the mix. They look particularly good on the waist line, or anywhere on the back, and looks almost like a picture when squared off. To learn more about this genre of literature, check out this course on modern poetry and immerse yourself in this writing style.
- Arabic Cursive
The cursive form of Arabic is particularly beautiful, and is not unlike calligraphy. It is much more stylized than the regular script, and can be altered to take up a much larger space than the non-cursive type. If you just can’t seem to find the right script for your tattoo, this article on 7 different lettering styles might help you make this important decision.
Arabic is associated with Islam, and is the original language of the Qur’an, the Muslim holy book. If you are spiritual, and would like a tattoo in that vein, a prayer, or other religious saying or phrase in Arabic would be very appropriate. If you like the idea of something spiritual, and want to learn more about Islam, this course on Islam 101 will give you a quick introduction to this ancient religion.
- Henna Tattoos
If you’re still unsure about getting a tattoo that will last forever, or you just want to see what the tattoo you’re going to get will look like, consider getting your Arabic tattoo in henna. Henna is a natural dye and will last for one to three weeks, depending on several factors. Give it a shot before taking the plunge.
Make sure you don’t rush this decision, because, as you know, it will last you a lifetime (unless you go for the henna option of course!). After you finally decide what kind of Arabic tattoo you want and where you want it, sleep on it for a week, because a week of indecision beats a lifetime of regret. If all of this talk of Arabic has made you curious to learn more about it, this course on how to read and write Arabic will teach you how to read other people’s Arabic tattoos.