26 Unique Symbols Of Love And Their Meanings

✔ Research-backed

There are many ways to express love, as every culture has its own symbol of love. There are several traditional love symbols that are often used in Western and Eastern art from historical times, not just roses and hearts. So, here we have gathered a few romantic and sentimental love symbols from different cultures. These symbols will help you learn more about love and also their hidden symbolism. So, go ahead and express love, care, admiration, and endearment in a new way.

In This Article

26 Symbols Of Love And Their Meanings

Here is a list of unique, romantic, and meaningful symbols of love, some of which are popular, while a few are lesser-known.

1. Apple

According to ancient Chinese culture and Greek and Norse mythology, the apple symbolizes unconditional love. It is a symbol that reflects abundance and a long-lasting romantic relationship. Throwing an apple was an expression of love and adoration in ancient Greece.

Apple as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

2. Harp

The harp was used in traditional love songs for its gentle and melodic sound. It is a Celtic love symbol, representing the bridge of love that connects the Earth with Heaven. According to Icelanders and Norwegians, a ladder formed by harp strings reflects the progression towards higher stages of love.

protip_icon Quick fact
According to the Book of Samuel, the warrior David played the harp to express his devotion to king Saul. The therapeutic music from the harp made the evil spirit that tormented kind Saul leave him (1).
Harp as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

3. Claddagh

The love symbol belongs to Irish folklore and consists of two hands, one crown, and one heart. This Celtic symbol is usually carved in a Claddagh ring, a traditional piece of jewelry used as an engagement or wedding ring.

Claddagah as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

4. Swans

White swans are a familiar symbol of love and are associated with the ancient Roman and Greek goddesses of love. They are often photographed as mates, with their beaks touching and a heart shape created with the curvature of their necks. They have been used as a symbol of love, devotion, and intimacy throughout the world.

Swans as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

5. Doves

Considered to be a significant symbol of peace and love, two doves together depict eternal love. They mate all their life, and therefore, they symbolize fidelity. According to Roman and Greek mythology, doves were sacred animals. There are various images of goddesses with doves fluttering around them.

protip_icon Trivia
In ancient Aztec culture, Xochiquetzal, the Goddess of Love, is revered as the mother of humanity after the Great Flood. Legend has it that she descended on Earth as a dove and gifted the world speech and languages.
Doves as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

6. Cupid

Cupid is one of the most popular symbols of love. It is used widely in Roman and Greek artwork and is depicted as a cute little boy with wings using an arrow and bow to pierce people’s hearts and make them fall in love with each other.

Cupid as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

7. Rose quartz

It is a precious pink stone that is a famous and forever symbol of love since 600 B.C. Found in ancient legends from Egypt, Greece, and China, the stone is believed to foster feelings of self-love and attract the kind of romantic relationship you wish to have.

Rose quartz as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

8. Jasmine

The white flower with a sweet fragrance is a potent symbol of love. Believed to have originated from the Himalayan foothills, jasmine is considered pure and sacred and held with reverence in the Hindu religion. Thus, many Hindu goddesses are depicted wearing garlands made of jasmine flowers.

Jasmine as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

9. Love knot

It represents eternal love. The popular Celtic symbol consists of loops that have no end and no beginning, just like everlasting love and attachment.

Love knot as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

10. Red roses

Red roses are the most popular symbol of love worldwide and have been used to represent affection since time immemorial. They are often attributed to goddesses in Roman and Greek mythology.

Red rose as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

11. Heart

The heart shape has been the universal love symbol for centuries. It is a traditional symbol whose origin is unknown. The heart is believed to be associated with higher human emotions such as compassion, charity, faith, and fidelity. The heart shape is usually used to symbolize love, warmth, affection, tenderness, romance, and excitement of love.

Heart as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

12. Ladybird

The ladybird is a common good luck symbol and also represents love. According to certain cultures in Asia, it is believed that if a captured ladybird is released, it will fly to the love of your life and whisper your name to them. After hearing your name, your true love will come to you.

Ladybird as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

13. Infinity

The beautiful love symbol is similar to the love knot and represents forever love. The infinity symbol is popular in ancient Rome, Tibet, India, and Greece. It consists of loops that have no beginning and no end, representing eternity in love.

Infinity as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

14. Seashells

Found in ancient Greece, Rome, and India, seashells are a symbol of love. All the goddesses of love across these three cultures—Aphrodite, Venus, and Lakshmi are seen having seashells. The hard casing of these shells symbolizes the protectiveness in a romantic relationship.

Sea shells as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

15. Maple leaf

The maple leaf is the most diverse symbol of love. In China and Jana, it represents true and beautiful love. In North America, maple leaves are placed at the foot of the beds as a symbol of protection against demons and negativities. Maple leaves depict the wonders and sweetness of love.

Maple leaves as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

16. The Ankh

The ancient Egyptian symbol for love resembles the Christian cross with a loop on the top. Also known as crux ansata, it commonly represents immortality and life and symbolizes fertility as it represents the female genitalia.

protip_icon Quick fact
Ankh is also considered a symbol of balance between opposite forces, such as masculinity and femininity. It can also symbolize joy, energy, and fertility.
The Ankh as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

17. Three-leaf clover

The three-leaf clover is a sacred plant in Ireland and is also the country’s national symbol. It represents love, faith, and hope and is worn by Irish couples on the day of their wedding as it is believed to bring good fortune in their marriage. Also known as Shamrock, it is a metaphor for the Holy Trinity.

Three-leaf clover as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

18. Triskele

It is one of the oldest Celtic love symbols with three interlocked spirals representing fire, earth, and water. They are connected by a continuous line that represents love, eternal life, and unity.

protip_icon Quick fact
Triskele holds much importance in modern-day jewelry, and you can find it in pendants, earrings, Irish charms, and Celtic brooches.
Triskele as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

19. Venus

It is the second planet in the solar system between Earth and Mercury. The symbol of Venus is a circle sitting on a cross, which is similar to the female sex symbol. Venus represents infatuation, sexual desire, and longing in European traditions, and it represents fertility, beauty, and purity in Indian tradition.

Venus as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

20. Diamonds

Diamonds have been a symbol of eternal commitment and love for ages. It is a Greek belief that Cupid uses diamond-tipped arrows with the magical power to inspire love in hearts and bring them together. That is why diamond jewelry is widely used as an expression of love and fondness across different cultures.

protip_icon Quick fact
Diamonds began to be used as engagement rings in 1477. It was this year, Archduke Maximillian of Austria presented a diamond ring to Mary of Burgundy upon their wedding (2).
Diamonds as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

21. Triangle

Triangle indicated the capacity for love in ancient Egypt. It also represents the love shared by a father, mother, and child. The triangle is a crucial element of the Buddhist Shri Yantra that promotes the invocation of love energy. An inverted triangle symbolizes a vessel poured with love.

Triangle as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

22. Ribbons and frills

The association of ribbons and frills with love dates back to the days of the knights, who would ride to the battlefield wearing the scarf or ribbon given by his lady love. Years ago, women would drop their frilly handkerchief, hoping that a man would pick it up and give it back, expressing his interest in her.

Ribbons and frills as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

23. Hands

The clasped hands of Prince Albert and Queen Victoria were the symbol of the friendship that existed between England and Germany. Legend has it that a long time ago, a man asked for a woman’s hand when he proposed marriage to her, and since then, the hands have become the symbol of love and marriage.

Hands as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

24. Padme Lotus

It represents illumination, growth, purity, transformation, and love. A lotus with eight petals is a symbol of harmony, and a lotus with thousands of petals is a symbol of enlightenment. With a change in the lotus’s color, its significance also changes. For instance, the red lotus symbolizes love, passion, and ardor.

Padme Lotus as the symbol of love

Image: Shutterstock

25. Nsoromma

Nsoromma means a star, and it symbolizes guardianship. It is a constant reminder that God is watching over us. This symbol represents bonding, faithfulness, and love, especially in the marital bond.

Nsoromma as the symbol of love

Image: Image: Shutterstock

26. Kokopelli

Kokopelli

Image: Image: Shutterstock

Kokopelli is the fertility God of the Hopi tribe, symbolizing love, courtship, fertility, healing, and music. Kokopelli is revered in several Native American cultures in the Southwestern US, taking the form of a hunchbacked grasshopper. Kokopelli is also an integral part of the Hopi rituals, by playing the love flute to attract a maiden. According to the tradition, the man would break his flute upon marriage, signifying a commitment to never play it again. Ancient legends consider this act as a symbol of enduring and long-lasting love. This iconic representation is also found in cave art, pottery, and folklore.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What does a key symbolize in love?

In the modern world, exchanging a key with your loved one is a sign of trust, affection, and responsibility and conveys your will to stay with your partner in a long-term relationship. A key also symbolizes success and security.

2. Is the moon a symbol of love?

Moon is often associated with peace, beauty, loyalty, purity, femininity, and eternity. It has been among the most loved and popular symbols used to describe love for a long time. Moreover, the moon and stars sometimes represent a romantic and harmonious association between a man and woman.

3. What is the meaning behind the love lock phenomenon?

The love lock phenomenon is when couples affix padlocks to bridges, fences, or other objects to symbolize their enduring love and commitment. It represents their unity and the belief that their love is strong and unbreakable, standing the test of time.

Love is a special feeling that often can’t be expressed with words. In such instances, sharing a unique symbol of love with your partner can help you express your emotions and feelings in a special way. You can pick the most relatable symbol from these captivating love symbols and use it as an image or buy a similar-looking gift to convey your feelings. These symbols have deep meanings and stories that make them unique and special. So, use these love symbols to strengthen your bond with your beloved and display your most passionate feelings!

Infographic: Love Symbols From Around The World

Over the generations, love has been represented by various symbols worldwide. From Europe to America, here are a few lesser-known love symbols in the infographic below to share and uniquely express your untold feelings to your loved ones.

love symbols from around the world (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Key Pointers

  • We all know hearts, cupids, and red roses symbolize love.
  • Lesser known symbols may include an apple, harp, or a Claddagh.
  • Seashells, ladybirds, the Ankh, and the Triskele bear cultural and spiritual importance.
symbol of love_illustration

Image: Dall·E/MomJunction Design Team

Discover the top 5 ancient symbols of love! From the heart to the infinity symbol, explore the timeless symbols that have been used to express love for centuries.

References

MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. David Playing The Harp Before Saul.
    https://www.artic.edu/artworks/138156/david-playing-the-harp-before-saul
  2. History Of The Engagement Ring.
    https://www.capetowndiamondmuseum.org/blog/2012/02/history-of-the-engagement-ring/
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Monk Sadhvi Nishtha Om is a practicing psychologist and psychotherapist in India with ten years of experience. She has worked with children, adolescents and adults using tools such as Therapeutic Meditation, Inner Child Healing, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Emotional Empowerment Technique (EET) in a career spanning more than a decade. She holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from...read full bio