Meaning of the Arrow Symbol
Native American Indians were a deeply spiritual people and they communicated their history, thoughts, ideas and dreams from generation to generation through Symbols and Signs such as the Arrow symbol. Native American symbols are geometric portrayals of celestial bodies, natural phenomena and animal designs. The arrow was very important to the Native Indians. The Bow and Arrow enabled the Indians to hunt the animals which would provide their food, clothing, weapons and tools. The bow and arrow were used by skilled hunters who held a pair of arrows in the left hand, which also held the bow, and held another arrow in his mouth. A quiver with spare arrows hung from his shoulder. The Bow and arrow also allowed the Native Indian to defend his family in times of war. The meaning of the Arrow symbol altered according to the way they were depicted.
The meaning of the above single arrow indicated protection and defence. Arrows also signified direction, force, movement, power and direction of travel. When an arrow pointed to the left it meant warding off evil, pointing to the right meant protection and an arrow pointing down meant peace. Two arrows depicted together were the symbol for war.
Two Arrows in different directions symbolised War
A bundle of five arrows represented one of the five founding tribes of the Iroquois League. One arrow could easily be broken, while a bundle of five arrows would remain strong. Crossed arrows were symbols of friendship. A broken arrow was a symbol of peace.
A Broken Arrow symbolised Peace
Crossed Arrows were the Symbol of Friendship
For more interesting facts and information refer to Bows and Arrows and How to make a Bow.
The Arrow Symbol - Meaning
There were so many tribes of Native American Indians it is only possible to generalise the most common meaning of the Arrow symbol or pattern. Native Indian symbols are still used as Tattoos and were used for a variety of reasons and depicted on numerous objects such as tepees, totem poles, musical instruments, clothes and War Paint. Indian Tribes also used their own Colors for Symbols and designs depending on the natural resources available to make Native American paint.