Symbols have resembled power in various ways for the longest period of time, mostly extracted from ancient cultures and beliefs. If you pull up history, you’ll come to learn about the significance of many such symbols that were primarily used by ancient people to communicate ideas and concepts.
Moreover, the divergence of mankind relied heavily on symbols to express, visualize, and differentiate the concept of their existence. If you dig deeper into the symbols, you’ll find links to how it was essential for human societies to exert power and strength for their survival.
In this blog, we’ve covered the top ten and oldest symbols that resemble power. Scroll down to read.
The eagle, or the golden eagle to be more precise, is the most common symbol of power. Eagles are humongous birds that are known to be powerful, primarily because they have no natural threats or predators. They are also considered to be powerful because they usually prey on other animals that are much larger than them in size.
The golden eagle was adopted by Napoleon Bonaparte as a pet to resemble his power in the military. It represented strength, a concept which originated from the Aztec culture. Later on, it became more visual in ancient arts and drawings of warriors to display their courage and power.
Did you know that the golden eagle is also associated with Wind Symbolism, which demonstrated that they take off and collide with the energy of wind? Interesting, right?
Lion, the king of the jungle is yet another symbol of power. It originated from the Egyptian goddess of war, Sekhmet, who was often compared to a lioness for her strength, dominance, and power.
Furthermore, the lion soon became the symbol of Gilgamesh, the demigod of Mesopotamian mythology. He was widely known for his physical strength too.
Griffin is linked to wealth and sun, according to Christian art. It was also spotted in ancient Mediterranian and Middle Eastern art. It was basically a sign of power, which later on explained why Alexander the Great also turned to the griffin symbol.
The Christian community believes that griffins played a huge role in Michael, the Archangel’s life. More importantly, two griffins together indicate enlightenment.
4. Chinese Dragon
The most common symbol of strength, power, prosperity, and hope is the Chinese Dragon. According to history, the dragon accompanied the Emperor of China to demonstrate his power of authority.
Many ancient Chinese people also said that they believe that the Yellow Emperor of China, the first ruler transformed into a half-dragon before he made his way to heaven.
Such ancient beliefs have been passed on for years and years for people to think that the Chinese dragon is a sign of power and good luck.
The symbol of the Jaguar originates from early Columbian cultures, where they used this dangerous animal to depict loyalty, strength, and power. In the Mayan civilization, the word Balam, which in Mayan means Jaguar became a sign of strong force and power.
In the Aztec culture, jaguars were a symbol of superhuman warriors, resembling power in the military force, which later became the Jaguar Knights.
Phoenix came from Greek mythology. The oldest belief is that it is an immortal bird that departs its life and regenerates from its own ashes. Some say that it comes back to life as it decomposes, while some say that the flames from burning it are so powerful that it is reborn again. The myth behind the phoenix being immortal is still unclear to many, however, it still remains a symbol of power.
Phoenix is also linked to the sun, and the ancient Egyptians believed it to be a sign of resilience and energy.
There are many people who use the phoenix as a symbol to display self-control, and their definition of power too.
7. Oak Tree
The oak tree was a sign of blessing and was worshiped by the people of the Greek civilization. It was considered to be sacred and some scholars expressed that it was a sign of their chief god, Zeus.
The oak tree was religiously associated with thunder gods too. Oaktree is also known as Duir, which is the Celtic word for it. It means firm and strong, hence symbolizes power.
If you look into Greek history and mythology, you’ll observe that most of the pictures and images include a boar being killed or at war. They were also engraved on swords and armors of Germanic tribes, which was to demonstrate power when they were at war.
Furthermore, it also became a sacred animal in Hinduism, as it was an avatar of Vishnu, a Hindu god symbolizing vigor, energy, and power.
The word “ka” was used to define power, the force of life in ancient Egyptian culture. Ka is basically a word that means bull or cow in Egyptian. It is also a religious concept that is associated with their gods symbolizing fertility and strength.
Bull is a symbol of the god of war, Zeus among Greco-Romans, and Neto among the Iberians. The Celts also religiously believe that bull is a sacred animal that depicts wealth, resilience, and virility.
Lastly, the arrow commonly known as the power symbol in many cultures manifested in ancient times. It basically refers to knowledge and power. The greek deity, Artemis, and Apollo were hunters, hence the arrows they carried made people believe that it is a sign of power. Arrow is also known to be powerful among Romans, Hindus, and Greeks, as the gods, Eros, Kama, and Cupid all come with arrows and were all worshipped as gods of sex appeal.
Power can be defined in various ways and can mean different things to different people. For some power can mean resilience, or energy, while for others it can mean physical strength. There are many myths about the symbols of power that are related to supremacy, strength, energy, force, sex appeal, and a lot more.
As you just learned, there have been so many symbols of power across ages and cultures. In order to better understand the nature of power and its relationship to humans and to society, learning such symbols can prove to be invaluable.