Ever wonder the meanings of Angelina Jolie’s Tattoos. This article will unravel the meanings and provide insights to her numerous body arts.
Angelina Jolie is a famous American actress and has been cited in many celebrity news, magazines and websites as one of the world’s “most beautiful woman” as well as the most “attractive” movie stars. She is best known for her lead roles in films such as “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider”, “Hackers”, “Mr. & Mrs. Smith”, “Girl, Interrupted”, “Wanted”, “Changeling” and her voice work in “Kung Fu Panda”.
Another aspect of her stardom that has garnered her great attention, both by her fans and the media, is her affinity to tattoos. Angelina Jolie tattoos are reflection of her persona, sensuality and emotional connections to her everyday life. Because of these, her collection of body arts are ever changing and evolving with new ones added to remind her of things she cares the most, while some being inked over or removed completely when they no longer holds true to her.
Angelina Jolie’s first Tattoo: Death
Angelina Jolie inked her first tattoo at a very young age. Her first tattoo was a Japanese kanji for the word “Death” and inscribed on her left back shoulder. It served as a reminder to her to live life to the fullest. She has since covered it up with an ancient Khmer script when she adopted her son, Maddox.
Blue Tongue Dragon, Cross & “Quod Me Nutrit Me Destruit”
The Blue Tongue Dragon is the first dragon tattoo Angelina Jolie inked on her body which she got while intoxicated in Amsterdam. She regretted doing it and has since covered it with a black Latin Cross tattoo.
Next to the Latin Cross is a phrase in Latin:
“Quod me nutrit me destruit”
“What nourishes me, destroys me.”
According to her, she had the Latin Cross tattoo done the day before she married, her then husband, Jonny Lee Miller (her co-star in the movie “Hackers”) in 1995. She said the intention of the tattoo “was all symbolic, and it was a good thing, nothing dark.”
A Prayer for the Wild at Heart…
The tattoo on Angelina Jolie’s inner left arm is a quotation from Tennessee Williams:
“A prayer for the wild at heart, kept in cages.”
She had this tattoo done in the presence of her mother, Marcheline Bertrand. So what does the quotation means to her? In Angelina’s own words:
“I don’t think I know one person who I think can be completely who they are, every second of the day, who feels completely free…So it’s kind of a prayer for everybody to find their happiness, to break out…Anything that makes us comfortable, those things are cages around us.”
Angelina Jolie’s Tribal, Window & Dragon Tattoos
At Angelina Jolie’s lower back, she had three tattoos done: a tribal, a blue window and a tribal dragon.
The ‘tribal’ design was done at the same period when she did the Kanji “Death” tattoo. It is unclear as to the meaning of the ‘tribal’ tattoo, other than the possibility of it being an ‘in’ design when she had it inked.
At the centre of her lower back is a ‘tribal dragon’ but now is partially covered by the Bengal Tiger tattoo.
The ‘window tattoo’ refers to her once held view on life: “Wherever I am, I find myself looking out of the window, wishing I was somewhere else.”
The window has since been covered up by the tail of the Bengal Tiger. She had the window covered because she no longer subscribed to that view and she felt that she is “where she wants to be right now”.
Angelina Jolie’s Bengal Tiger Tattoo
Besides the Khmer script tattoo, the other prominent tattoo on Angelina’s back is the Bengal Tiger tattoo. The tattoo spreads 30 centimeters long and 20 centimeters wide and was commissioned to commemorate her Cambodian citizenship.
According to press report, it took Sompong Kanphai, the tattoo artist, 2 hours to complete the design which was done in Bangkok in 2004. It took two hours to complete the tattoo because Angelina opted for a traditional Thai tattooing style. Purely by hand, the tattoo artist maneuvered a long needle that glides inside a hollow tube, delicately inking the skin manually. While tattooing, the tattoo artist chanted ancient Buddhist hymn to bless the tattoo.
Buddhist Pali Prayer
Blessing for her and son Maddox
On Angelina’s left shoulder blade, she had a tattoo done based on a Buddhist Pali prayer written in Khmer script, the language of Cambodia where her son Maddox was born. She had the tattoo done to ‘spiritually’ blessed her and Maddox; and to protect them from bad luck.
Here’s the translation:
May your enemies run far away from you
If you acquire riches, may they remain yours always
Your beauty will be that of Apsara
Wherever you may go, many will attend, serve and protect you, surrounding you on all sides
The tattoo was done by Sompong Kanphai in in a hotel in Pathum Thani, Thailand, the same tattoo artist who did the ‘Bengal Tiger Tattoo”
Know Your Rights
This gothic letter tattoo “Know Your Rights” sits between her shoulder blades and the phrase is taken from the title of a song of her favorite band “Clash”. According to Angelina, it is a slogan of empowerment which she described as “humanitarian, but a little punk rock”.
Strength of Will
in Arabic Script
Inside her right forearm is an Arabic script tattoo which means “Strength of Will”. However some say it means “Determination”. But what ever it means, Angelina’s interpretation of the tattoo was revealed by her in an interview in a US television whilst promoting her film “Wanted”. She said: “I have ‘strength of will’ in one language, and we added it in four other languages on my arm.”
The Arabic tattoo is a cover up of the abstract tattoo she had together with her ex husband Billy Bob Thornton.
Rune Style “H” Tattoo on Angelina Jolie’s Inner Left Wrist
On Angelina Jolie’s inside left wrist is a rune style tattoo of the letter ‘H’. According to sources, it is to remind her of her brother, James Haven whereas some say it is to signify her ex-boyfriend Timothy Hutton. Knowing Angelina’s disposition to laser off any reminders of her past relationships, the former meaning is more plausible.
Billy Bob & Black Dragon Lasered Off and replaced by Geo-Tattoos
On her left arm, Angelina had “Billy Bob” and a Black Dragon inked when she was with Billy Bob Thornton. When she divorced from him she removed “Billy Bob” by laser. After the removal of it, in an interview she said:”I’ll never be stupid enough to have a man’s name tattooed on me again”
When she started a family, she had the Black Dragon removed as well and in its place are geo-coordinate tattoos (expressed in the degrees, minutes, seconds notation) of where her children were born :
N 11º 33′ 0″ E 104º 51′ 00″
N 9º 2′ 0″ E 38º 45′ 0″
S 22º 40′ 26″ E 14º 31′ 40″
N 10° 46′ 0″ E 106º 41′ 40″
N 43º 41′ 21″ E 07º 14′ 28″
Satellite Photos of the Geo-Coordinates
N 11º 33′ 0″ E 104º 51′ 00″ – pinpoint a spot near a pond somewhere near an airport in the Cambodian capital of Phomn Penh where, purportedly, Maddox, was born.
N 9º 2′ 0″ E 38º 45′ 0″ – is the coordinate of a house in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa where her daughter Zahara was born.
S 22º 40′ 26″ E 14º 31′ 40″ – is the coordinate in Swakopmund (Namibian beach resort) where Angelina gave birth to her biological daughter with Brad Pitt, Shiloh in 2006.
N 10° 46′ 0″ E 106º 41′ 40″ – refers to the coordinate in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam where her adopted son Pax Thien was born.
The two new tattoos which both read N 43º 41′ 21″ E 07º 14′ 28″, were added later showing the birth locations of the hospital in the French city of Nice where her twins, Knox and Vivienne, were born in July.
Brad Pitt Tattoo Anytime Soon?
Angelina Jolie said: “I’ll never be stupid enough to have a man’s name tattooed on me again”
Angelina Jolie Intimate Heart Shape Tattoo for Brad Pitt
Well, we don’t have to wait long, Angelina Jolie has finally inked an intimate heart shape tattoo on her inner thigh for Brad Pitt. In an interview with MTV, when asked about the tattoo, Angelina confessed: “Um, it’s for Brad” At the time of the interview with MTV, she refused to reveal further the design of the heart shape tattoo. But not to worry, as she herself admitted, “I’m bad at hiding secrets”. It won’t be long before the whole world will know and this article will be the first to publish it. I guess the race is on for the first paparazzi to snap a shot of the tattoo.
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XIII and V MCMXL
Angelina at first had XIII (the Roman numeral for 13) tattooed on her left forearm because she doesn’t believe in superstitions.
Later she added the Roman Numeral V MCMXL, which signifies the date (May 13, 1940) when Winston Churchill uttered the famous words when he took office: “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat”.
Angelina Jolie’s Fake Tattoos for the movie “Wanted”
In the movie “Wanted”, she paid homage to Winston Churchill where she had two fake tattoos done in gothic script, “TOIL” and “TEARS”. In an interview for US television, Angelina said:
“We tried to focus the tattoos on themes related to this sense of justice […] From Churchill’s speech, ‘ I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat’; I had ‘toil’ and ‘tears’.”
She added fake tattoos to her back as well