Everyone’s interested in love symbols. The Chinese symbol for love is particularly interesting, purely for its artistic beauty. Chinese symbols and meanings are popular because of their multipurpose utility in the form of arts and crafts, tattoo designs and T-shirt prints. The Chinese symbol of love is a craze amongst the tattoo loving population.
Origin and History
Chinese symbols have a history of more than 100,000 years. The Chinese symbol of love is not an easy to write symbol and has developed many different forms over the years. History has seen many different symbols for love, with varying degrees of complexity, due to variations in the traditional writing style and the modern simplified writing style. The traditional Chinese writing system was dropped by the Chinese government, some fifty years ago, but was later reintroduced. The reintroduced version was a little simpler and contained fewer writing strokes. So, while the traditional symbol is highly detailed and artistic, the simplified version is easy to write and understand. The simplified version is used in Mainland China, while the traditional one is still valued in Taiwan.
What can be said about the meaning of the Chinese symbol for love, other than that it means ‘love’. But love is only one of the meanings of this symbol as it is composed of more than one symbols. The Chinese symbol of love can be used in different contexts by different people to express love. Its meanings differ according to the variations in strokes and it can also mean fond of, like, cherish, first love, true love, love you forever, etc.
Apart from romantic love, it can also be used as a symbol that expresses affection and care towards close kins such as parents, siblings, children and spouses. However, as long as the expression of love is concerned, Chinese is a more reserved culture. So if you are new to it, use the love symbol with care. It is made up of more than one Chinese characters and captures the essence of love in the following manner.
In the traditional version of the Chinese symbol of love, the first component is the xin, or the heart, which lies exactly in the center of the symbol. The symbol that lies exactly above the xin means ‘breathe into’ and the one exactly below it means ‘gracious motion’. The meaning of love is thus conveyed as something that breathes into the heart and inspires gracious motion. The simplified or modern form is more practical and emphasizes on friendship rather than a romantic liaison. The lower part of the symbol, you3, means a friend.
The following are some of the other variations of the Chinese symbol of love and their meanings.
- ai4 qing2 means love between man and woman.
- ai4 ren2 means lover, husband or wife.
- ai4 hao4 means a love interest or just a pastime.
There are more of these, but the ones mentioned above are the most prominent. In China, love is synonymous with happy marriage and family life.
Chinese Love Symbol: Pronunciation and Usage
The pronunciation or the Chinese pinyin of the Chinese symbol for love is written as ai4. This basically means that it is pronounced as ‘eye’ in the fourth tone. This is contained in the Chinese names of Alice and Edward.
The Chinese symbol of love is used in arts, crafts and popular Chinese symbol tattoos.
Other Auspicious Chinese Symbols and Meanings
The Mandarin ducks symbolize lovers.
The double happiness Chinese symbol symbolizes conjugal happiness and fertility.
China’s queen of flowers, the red peony, symbolizes romance and youthful amorous feelings.
Five Fortunes Surround Longevity: this symbol is a grouping of five bats that represent five good fortunes, such as: Love, Health, Prosperity, Longevity, and Quality.
The Chinese symbol for love is really, truly awesome, not only for its artistic beauty but also for its clarity, lucidity and effectiveness. It is truly a stylish symbol, if you wish to get it tattooed on your arm or lower back. Go for it!