Bracelets have always been a way of expression for people. People use various motifs in their bracelets to express how they see themselves or as a symbolic representation of their character. Animal bracelets also fall in a way to be expressive. There are several animal types, like snakes or lions that have been picked from the mythologies. One of the most important of them all is the wolf bracelet. Let us look at the history of wolf bracelets, what they symbolize, and why you should get one.
The history of wolf bracelets
Ancient civilizations revered animals and designated them as guardians of a vast array of human activities based on their natural behavior. The wolf has been a prominent animal across different civilizations and mythologies even though the perception of the wolf has varied across cultures. Some representations of the wolf are positive, as seen in East Asian and Far West nations. Some nations in the Southern European countries view the wolf as a sign of bad omen, but on the whole, wolves are seen as a source of power and loyalty.
Wolf bracelets in Roman Mythology
The foundation of the city of Rome stems from two wolves, Romulus and Remus. According to the Romans, wolves were a symbol of the god of war and agriculture, Mars. For them, wolves were a symbol of new beginnings, of relentlessness. They were also an icon of loyalty to the country and the motherland.
Wolf bracelets in Egyptian Mythology
In Egyptian culture, wolves were symbols of being a guardian and protector of souls that entered the Underworld. They also symbolized knowledge and instincts. Pharaohs, who are the rulers of Egypt, were given either feline or wolf-like attributes to accentuate their status. It was believed that wolves are a messenger and champion of the Egyptian royals.
Wolf bracelets in Turkish Mythology
As per their legends, the rebirth of the entire Turkish civilization was through a she-wolf. The God of the Turks, Tengi, had sent a she-wolf to mate with the only remaining human on Earth to foster ten children who then went on to become the kings of the future communities in Turkey. From this legend, the Turks derived a sense of rebirth, establishment of one's self, and determination from the symbolism of wolves.
Wolf bracelets in Japanese Mythology
Since the early days, farmers in Japan would offer food near wolves' dens and construct shrines in their honor. They did the same because it was thought that the wolves would protect them and their crops from wild boars and deer. Wolves were also rethought to forewarn about calamities and brought about prosperity and fertility to the region.
Wolf bracelets in Indian Mythology
In Indian culture, wolves are always raised to a higher standard of reverence and respect. There are several stories in folklore and mythology involving wolves. One prominent story is that of Ashvini, who got her eyesight back thanks to a she-wolf. However, wolves were also held to a standard of ruthlessness in Indian culture. The title of a wolf was only conferred to someone when they believed they were intellectual and had an inborn talent to lead a pack.
Wolf bracelets in Viking Mythology
The wolf continues to be a motif of an enigma in the Norse or Viking mythology. One of the leading gods in Norse mythology is Fenrir, a revered monster. Based on his character traits, the wolf always symbolized a sense of bravery, mischief, teamwork, and sheer brute power. Geri and Freki were also wolves who were the guardians of Odin, the king of the Norse gods. For the Vikings, the wolves also represented good omen, wisdom, and protection.
The symbolism behind a wolf bracelet
Through popular culture, there are two ways in which the symbolism for wolves can be traced. One is the concept of a wolf pack. Usually, wolves tend to roam around in packs. They are led by a leader or leaders, the alpha male, and female. The pack sticks together through thick and thin, and some people and cultures derive inspiration from that. Through these actions, they believe that wolves become a symbol of showing loyalty to one's family and the ability to support one another through tough times.
It also shows the quality of leadership, especially in the Indian culture, where only leaders are conferred with wolf associated titles. Usually, a group of people buy these matching wolf bracelets as a pledge of loyalty. It strives to honor the hard times that they have been through together and how they have emerged from it as a unit together.
On the flip side, sometimes wolves go estranged from their pack, and they are called lone wolves. Lone wolves tend to fend for themselves for food, shelter, and through several hardships. They are often a motif of determination and a never-give-up attitude. Lone wolves also encourage the concept of realizing that there is always light at the end of the tunnel.
When hunting for prey, wolves face a lot of obstacles. The joy at the end of finding it is incomparable. Similarly, wolf bracelets also represent how one fought against all the odds in clinching victory or simply to get to where they are in life.
Wolf bracelets have been a big part of the Viking culture for a very long time. Wolves have had both positive and negative influences on people in the folklore. But at the end of the day, wolf bracelets come to symbolize a sense of loyalty, determination and fighting through the odds to establish yourself and your truth, and to come out stronger on the other side. It brings along a sense of wanting to pull everyone up and help everyone, to protect your loved ones, and to spread love to those who matter the most to you. It brings together a message of love, but with a sense of regality.
Cultural Significance of a wolf bracelet
Although wolves have had an enormous impact on mythology, they were also fundamental in the making of several cultures. One such culture is Native American culture. They have used the symbol of their Native Wolf for quite a while on all their jewelry, and bracelets are no exception. They believed that the wolves were deceased hunters from the Native American tribes who have taken a rebirth to direct the community in the right direction. Wolves were thought to possess supernatural powers and were a symbol of hunting and procuring. That same symbol is now used in jewelry to represent strong family ties, communication between partners, pledging allegiance, education, and understanding.
Popular Designs of wolf bracelets
There are several designs and patterns available in the market concerning wolf bracelets. They could have different symbolic representations based on culture. It could be wolf heads, or it could be from different materials. Here are a few examples to give you an idea of the same.
Glass Wolf Bracelet
They are silver or steel bracelets that have a gold or platinum plating on top of them. The centerpiece is a glass dome structure. An image of a wolf, either the entire body or the face, is between the two pieces of glass forms the dome structure. It is an intricate design but represents the fragility of loyalties underlying the strength. The steel of the strap depicts the contrasts that make up a wolf and emphasizes how important it is to maintain balance and bring coordination. These concepts are the core values on which wolf packs are built.
Leather- Single Strap Wolf Bracelet
The single leather strap bracelet comes with a wider strap, usually made out of faux leather, either intertwined or left matte, depending on the customer's requirement. The centerpiece is the latch of the article. The latch is attached with solder to a wolf head motif made of alloy. Wolf's head is singular and usually represents someone who believes themselves to be a lone wolf. It represents their struggles in their life and their strive for independence. It showcases a true sense of solidarity and self-belief.
The use of leather finds root in the Native American concept of wolves representing hunters and being resourceful. Leather, derived from a form of hunting and resourcefully utilizing the remains, draws a beautiful parallel between the two. The striking black of the leather also enhances the head's metal colors, as the authority of the black reign, a quality often represented in wolves.
Silver Engravings Wolf Bracelet
Specific cultural reasons often ensue on why people buy these bracelets. The engraving is usually that of a symbol that represents a wolf, instead of an actual wolf. It could be the symbol of Fenrir from Norse Mythology or the Native Wolf Symbol from the Native Americans. Usually, the engravings are on a silver surface. Several perceived health benefits from wearing silver jewelry include body heat regulation, circulation, and wound healing. These qualities perfectly sync with wolves, which often survive in harsh climates.
Beaded Wolf Bracelets
Often, black beaded bracelets become the tying symbol of expressionism in correlation to wolf bracelets. Black symbolizes authority. It is bold, strong, and elegant. Usually, black beaded bracelets have onyx crystals in them. People believe that onyx crystals can relieve grief and bring a sense of rejuvenation in their life. They are also supposed to bring fortune, ensuring the protection of self and loved ones and knowledge. These bracelets usually have one link of a wolf head, again symbolizing the lone wolf.
It stresses the idea that only you can take the reins of your life, and the importance of understanding loyalties and allegiances. The bracelet's black reflects the alpha properties that the lead wolf gains from leading the pack and has a symbolic value.
Viking Wolf Bracelets
For a very long time in history, the Vikings have always adorned the wolf bracelets, especially the men. The bracelet is a silver alloy mold, with added back stripes made from a form of pewter. The bracelet, however, does not latch. Instead, it works as an adjustable bangle. The ends of the bracelets are heavier solders of wolf heads. The most symbolic part of the bracelet is the gap between the two heads. The heads themselves tell a story. One of the heads represents the wolves of Odin, Geri, and Freki. The other head represents the Norse God Fenrir. In more intricately designed Viking wolf bracelets, you can notice that one of the heads will show swords alongside the wolf's mouth, representing Fenrir.
The story goes that Fenrir was an out of control monster. The gods then bound him and locked his mouth in place with swords to stop him from harming. But eventually, he will break free and kill Odin at Ragnarok, the end of the world, as per the Vikings. The head that is not Fenrir depicts a story of Odin. The bracelet provides a sense of importance and pride to the wearer and allegiance to their motherland. It shows that by wearing the bracelet, you stop the two ends from meeting and, in turn, trying to save the world from impending doom. The Vikings thought that getting to wear this bracelet is an honor, and it is only fair to respect the value behind it.
The vast number of wolf bracelet options can be pretty overwhelming when you are trying to find something that suits your personality. But the trick is to keep an open mind and consider your sentiments. It is essential to understand why you are buying the bracelet in the first place, how it connects to your personality and personal experiences, and the story you want to tell others about this bracelet. However, always be aware that when you buy and try to wear a wolf bracelet that specifically belongs to a particular community or mythology, it might become a case of cultural appropriation.
But ultimately, it boils down to your taste, what you think looks good on you and why you want to buy the bracelet.
We have had a look at the history and the cultural importance given to wolf bracelets in all the communities that rever the wolf. We have also seen how wolf bracelets are perceived in modern times. So, it’s now time for you to make the choice and pick the wolf bracelet that personifies who you are.