Q:

What is the symbolic meaning of a turtle?

A:

The turtle is a symbol of endurance and persistence in many cultures. The turtle also symbolizes the Earth in many cultures, such as Native American legends.

The turtle is traditionally a symbol of perseverance and resilience. Fables, such as "The Tortoise and the Hare," rely on these symbols to show the value of perseverance. According to the University of Houston, the turtle can symbolize creativity, endurance, strength, fertility and stability. Turtles are also associated with longevity because the animals live very long lives.

Native American traditions refer to the North American continent as Turtle Island in reference to traditional legends that say the Earth grew from the back of a turtle. The turtle is also associated with the Earth in Hindu and Chinese cultures. Some Native American tribes, such as the Hopi, used turtles to represent water. Other tribes considered the turtle a symbol of safety.

Because the turtle carries its home on its back, the animal can symbolize the ability to adapt to new situations and environments easily. Both sea and land turtles symbolize protection in reference to the turtle's ability to hide within its shell when threatened. Turtles can also represent slowing down or setting a steady pace due to the slow nature of the animal. The sea turtle can be associated with an easygoing nature because these turtles travel with the tides, rather than to specific destinations.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What is the symbolic meaning of turtle doves?

    A:

    Turtle doves symbolize love and faithfulness because they mate for life, work together to build nests and raise their young together. They are immortalized in literary and poetic works, such as the Old Testament, and artists like Shakespeare, Edmund Spenser and Buddy Holly.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the symbolic meaning of a scarab beetle?

    A:

    The scarab beetle, or dung beetle, is associated with death and rebirth or eternal life. Though the best-known culture revering scarab beetles was ancient Egypt, the scarab beetle is a widespread symbol throughout the ancient and prehistoric world.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the symbolic meaning of a seahorse?

    A:

    The seahorse has come to symbolize patience, protection, contentment and generosity. The seahorse gained symbolic and mystical meaning because the Ancient Greeks and Romans, European alchemists and the Chinese believed the seahorse was a magical creature with mystical significance.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the symbolic meaning of a butterfly?

    A:

    Although specific meanings vary from culture to culture, the butterfly is widely viewed as a positive symbol of personal transformation, freedom from previous struggles, renewal and hope. Its meaning differs slightly in different cultures.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore