Though many think of them as non-cultural musical instruments, harps are actually Irish symbols, often associated with Emerald Isle and used in many Irish tales. Harps can also be found on the famous Irish beer brand Guinness, as well as on most of the country’s currency, proving them to be not only common in the area, but also very meaningful to the Irish people. Since there are many different harp variations, the meaning does vary depending on the style, however, (as you will see below) they all look great in tattoo form. In fact, harp tattoos look so nice, that they are even worn by non-Irish people, and given in non-Irish countries.
The harp’s origination came long ago (back in the 1500’s) and was found in “The Image Of Ireland”, a book which featured the instrument being played by an Irish minstrel. Centuries later (in the year 1855 to be precise) the instrument was found again, this time in Edward Bunting’s “The Ancient Music Of Ireland”, a book well-known by most Irish musicians, and beloved by the culture’s vast majority. Due to it’s beautiful sound and common re-appearances throughout Irish tales, this instrument earned it’s way onto the country’s currency, and was also used by many of the nation’s religious leaders.
Now, in the year 2017, the harp has many different variations and is designed in detail by many different tattoo artists, allowing it to live on through the skin of many different people. In an attempt to showcase the instrument’s beauty, while also giving readers an idea of just how common the design is, we have created the list below. Consisting of 12 cool, unique harp designs, this list is bound to impress, and will certainly have you thinking differently of harps for now on. So, without any further ado, here are 12 cool harp tattoo designs!
1. A Centered Harp, With Leaves Along The Sides
Though most harp designs have color, this one is done solely in grey ink, and looks great as is.
2. A Unicorn Harp Tattoo
Due to their overall simplicity and proven by the unique image below, these ancient Irish instruments are fully customizable, and rather easy to incorporate into other tattoos.
3. A Very Colorful Harp With Some Neat Red Roses
Done in a traditional tattooing style, this design is not only colorful and vibrant, but also very detailed.
4. A Standard Irish Harp
Equipped with a traditional Irish clover and some lime green coloring, this design shows just how beautiful standard Irish harp tattoos can be!
5. An All Seeing Eye Harp Tattoo With Wings
Another very unique idea, likely carrying some bold meaning behind it.
6. A Black Harp Tattoo With A Butterfly
Although they are not usually associated with harp tattoos, the butterfly certainly adds a lot to this design. The black coloring of the harp’s body also looks great, though it too is rather uncommon.
7. A Colorless Harp Arm Tattoo
As you can see below, due to the harp’s long slender shape, it fits very well on the forearm.
8. Two Enchanting Harps
A perfect example of just how versatile harp designs can be. While the left harp features green leaves, a blue background and a light colored body, the harp to the right has bold flowers with red shading and a bronzy body.
9. An Angel Playing A Harp
Given the instrument’s history, the below image likely has a lot of meaning behind it. And much like some of the preceding designs, it too was done in just black and white.
10. The Guinness Harp Logo
You certainly don’t have to be an Irish musician to enjoy and understand this famous alcoholic logo.
11. A Black and Green Harp Neck Tattoo
Though it is a rather painful spot to get tattooed, harp neck tattoos certainly look great, and can easily take up the entire under-beard area.
12. A Black Harp With A Clover and An Irish Quote
No clue what the quote means, but it certainly looks nice alongside this very Irish design!
Assuming you were looking for some new tattoo design ideas when scrolling through this post, the above imagery should have certainly been helpful. As you now know, this stringed Irish instrument comes in many different forms, and is a great tattoo choice for just about anyone. In addition to it’s many different shapes and color options, the harp can be tattooed just about anywhere on the body, fits in well with most other pieces, and is extremely easy to customize. So, whether you hail from Ireland, are a musician able to play the harp, or are just looking for a neat design, you too can obtain some of these neat tats, and customize them well to fit your personality.