Memento Mori tattoos are inspired by the classical art of the Victorian era whose main theme was death. Many death-related tattoos are worn by millennials and generation z. Lately, tattoos inspired by the classical are making a comeback. The popularity of tattoos like Grim reaper, Guardian angel, and Santa Muerte is on the rise.
If you are looking for memorial tattoos that have a theme inspired by the fact that everyone will die one day then memento mori is the perfect choice for you. The history of memento mori tattoos can be traced back to classical antiquity. During the Medieval period, Memento mori was used as funerary art.
In the early 1900s Memento mori tattoo designs became popular in South America. Sailor Jerry gave the neo-traditional touch to the designs with Hawaiian calligraphy added. After that, there was no distinct modification to the designs. It stayed in mainstream popular and as of today, it is one of the most searched tattoo designs in southern America.
There are a few common motifs in Memento mori tattoo designs. Usually, people from different cultures love to add their death-related motifs to the basic design but some common elements often crossover. It is a basic practice to add motifs like Skull, Hourglass, Grim reaper, Scythe, Flowers, and coffin to the Memento mori tattoo design.
Memento Mori Tattoo Meaning
You can add any death-related motif to your memento mori tattoo but make sure that it is meaningful to you and your culture. Memento mori tattoos have several meanings as briefed below –
Death – This is the one truth about life. Everyone you see, Everyone you know will die. No one is here to live forever, A Memento mori tattoo is a constant reminder of that.
Even though this is the base meaning of the memento mori tattoo but not all people wear this design for death-related meaning. Many people consider that a constant reminder of death will not help you at all. It will limit your thoughts and efforts as you will always think that all your efforts for success or to achieve your goals will go in vain as you will die one day.
This is the reason why people add other motifs to their memento mori tattoo to modify its meaning.
Chaser – Adding a scythe or a grim reaper to your memento mori tattoo will imply that you are a chaser of goals. A Grim reaper takes the souls of human beings to the next world. It is believed that no one can escape the grim reaper as it will chase you down no matter where you hide.
Uniquely, your memento mori tattoo can imply the same that you know you will die but this does not mean that you won’t chase your dreams.
Life – A Memento mori tattoo is one of that unique tattoos that can signify both life and death at the same time. Memento mori stands for ‘Remember that you Die’. A unique take on this is that memento mori makes us realize that we should appreciate every passing moment of life.
A Memento mori tattoo can help us to see the value of life and how much time you waste In anxiety and depression.
Memento Mori tattoo placement
Where you can wear a memento mori tattoo depends a lot on what design you picked. If you are going for the word tattoo (‘Memento Mori’) then a cool idea would be to have it written in criss-cross style across your forearm or wrist.
If you picked the skull tattoo then the best choice would be to try it on the chest. If you are adding motifs then the size will increase and so the placement will change too. A Memento mori tattoo with grim reaper will suit back. If you are adding wilting flowers to it then try it on your stomach.
A Memento mori tattoo design with a coffin will suit the lower back. If you are adding a guardian angel to it then try it on full back.
Here we have chosen 170+ memento mori tattoo designs that can be tried by both men and women –
Memento Mori Tattoos Ideas
Memento Mori tattoo designs for men
Memento Mori tattoos with Skull
Memento Mori Tattoos Ideas for Women
Unique Memento Mori Tattoos
Memento Mori tattoos Stencil
Choosing a death-related tattoo is not an easy decision. You might face backlash from friends and family members as many people consider it a negative attitude. Share it with friends on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter and ask their opinion. If your memento mori tattoo is a memorial tattoo dedicated to someone close who passed away then make sure to add their name to the design.
References: Memento Mori Wiki