Symbolism of Ladybug in Literature
Ladybugs are also known as lady beetle. They are distinguished by their coloration, often red with black dots. However, they are also found in other colors and patterns. Wide varieties of ladybugs are welcome in gardens, as they prey on different insects that can damage plants. The name ladybug comes from the French word for “ladybird.” They are found worldwide and have been believed to bring good fortune since medieval times. Hence, the Ladybug is a part of the folklore and mythologies of many cultures. Most people welcome a ladybug sighting and react in delight when a ladybug lands on them. In addition, those who are fond of these insects consider the ladybug as their spirit animal.
The Ladybug’s shell protects its wings so that it can fly when needed. Also, the Ladybug’s vibrant color warns predators as being to chase the predators away. In Native American culture, especially the Cherokee, a ladybug is known as the Great Spirit and is a symbol of protection. The ladybug protects the tribe from the Sun god and direct heat. At the same time, the other tribes believe that ladybugs can protect them from influential evil spirits. According to Catholicism, ladybug represents protection and are known to have visited Virgin Mary after the birth of Jesus. In France, people worshipped ladybug to avoid an execution! Most farmers consider ladybugs as a symbol of protection to ward off predators and also life-givers. Ladybugs are also known to ward off evil spirits using their wings in the Celtic tradition.
Ladybugs are symbols of healing and health and even play an important role in protecting plants, which are food resources. In ancient English folklore, ladybugs were believed to take illnesses away. In Native American traditions, ladybugs were given for healing vibes. Orange ladybugs represent healing and vitality, along with a hummingbird, as they share the same energy. In Christianity, especially Catholicism, the ladybug symbolizes healing and grace, as with Mary. The French also believe that ladybugs have healing powers and are revered in many regions.
Historically and cross-culturally, ladybugs are called the charms of luck. In Feng shui, a ladybug is a symbol of good fortune. Hence it is used as the art of arranging spaces for the optimum flow of energy. Italians believe that a ladybug near a cradle brings good fortune to the child. In France, the landing of a ladybug is considered as a symbol of good luck as well as healing. According to the Belgian, if a ladybug crawls on a spinster’s hand, it represents good fortune through marriage. In England, the arrival of ladybugs brings good news of pleasant weather.
Ladybug, as a symbolism of dreams, is closely related to good luck, beauty, and transformation. The dream symbolism of a ladybug is common in every culture. Dreaming of many a ladybug can bring good news and good fortune. However, dreaming of more than one ladybug in a dream is a sign of minor chaos in a career or relationship. Dreaming of a ladybug also represents a need for physical rest. Also, when a person dreams of a ladybug, it can also represent transformation or personal growth in finances or career. In Christianity, dreaming of ladybugs symbolizes hope. If a person dreams of a dead ladybug, it represents transformation or new life. Also, a person dreaming of a yellow ladybug represents creativity.
Ladybug, as a spiritual symbol, means spiritual aspiration as they are believed to be a bridge between earthly and cosmic. The interpretation of the ladybug as a symbol of spirituality also changes according to its color. For example, the black ladybug represents divine beauty despite being unattractive, unlike the red one with black spots. A yellow ladybug is a spiritual symbol of masculine energy and ambition. A brown ladybug represents nurture and protection as well as resolution. Green ladybug spiritual symbolism is a sign of health and prosperity. Also, green ladybugs are extremely rare. Orange ladybugs are known as a symbol of creativity and prosperity. Seeing an orange ladybug also means a person has a clairvoyant spirit. A white ladybug with black spots is a symbol of subconscious thoughts. In Korean culture, the shaman beetle or ladybug is a messenger between the earth and the spirit world.
Landing and Sighting
Ladybug’s landing and sighting as symbolism is closely related to healing, good luck, or good fortune. In all cultures, a ladybug landing on a person brings him or her good luck, including healing if it lands on a sick person. Hence in the early 19th century, physicians used ladybugs to treat measles. In the Native American culture, sighting a ladybug was seen as a signal from a guardian spirit. According to Hindu mythology, seeing a lady beetle is viewed as an omen of death, devastation, or physical defeat. In the early days of Christianity, sighting a ladybug was believed to be a good sign and a symbol of hope. Seeing more than one ladybug, in Christian belief, can be a sign of an approaching storm.
Ladybugs are also a symbolism of true love along with revival. A bite from a ladybug means a person is going to welcome love in their life. Seeing a yellow ladybug is welcoming love. In ancient Asian traditions, catching and releasing a Ladybug represents sending a love message. According to ancient Norse mythology, the ladybug was sent to earthy by love goddess Freya in a bolt of lightning. Additionally, if an unwed woman is visited by a ladybug, she might get married within one year. Seeing a ladybug without spots represents love. In New Zealand, a blue ladybug represents love. Also, red ladybug is a symbol of new love and friendship.
Ladybugs go through an incredible transformation. Ladybug, as a symbol of transformation or renewal, is also related to self-discovery, similar to butterfly symbolism, including good luck. If he or she is afraid of a ladybug, it represents inner transformation. The orange ladybug represents transformation as well.
Ladybugs is a symbol of mythology that has a similarity in almost all cultures. According to Norse mythology, ladybugs were a gift to the planet earth from Thor. It is also called Freya’s bird as it is connected to the goddess of love, Freya. In Hinduism, the god Indra is associated with the ladybug and its protector. In Celtic tradition, the color red and black is connected to the spirit world. Hence a red ladybug with black spots symbolize a portal between two worlds. According to Switzerland mythology, children are told that ladybugs bring the baby, unlike storks as narrated in western folktales. The Native American Hopi tribe believed the black ladybugs represented rain dance when it was first sent to earth.
Examples of Ladybug as Symbolism in Literature
The House May Be Burning by Margaret Hasse
But keep writing.
Write by the glow of the windows,
the roof alight
like a red-haired girl,
you in the back yard, safe.
The ladybug’s flown away.
Recall her flit and armored crawl.
To the last breath of summer.
Upon the circular of winter.
In this poem, the ladybug represents transformation as the poet describes the change of season from summer to winter. It also represents beauty as the girl is compared to the ladybug.
Fish & Chips By Bernadette Mayer
I saw another ladybug
Chicago could win
if I eat the leftover fish & chips
in every line so I don’t forget
We went to the river called fish & chips
We stayed at the fish & chips tower
They donated a million dollars to the fish & chips foundation
so we could go to school for free
It’s called fish & chips college for women
In this example, the poet mentions seeing a ladybug and expects the Chicago team to win the game. Here a ladybug is a symbol of luck.
December By Roger Pfingston
Lodged tight for days
in a corner of the wall,
ladybug can’t resist the tree,
crawling now over cold
light, ceramic fruits,
tinsel lamb and sleigh.
In this poem, the ladybug represents transformation, hope, and happiness. The poet explains the ladybug’s journey from a closed space to an open area to the plants.
A brown spotted ladybug climbed the dizzy height of a grass blade, and Tom bent down close to it and said, “Lady-bug, ladybug, fly away home, your house is on fire, your children’s alone,” and she took wing and went off to see about it — which did not surprise the boy, for he knew of old that this insect was credulous about conflagrations, and he had practised upon its simplicity more than once.”
In this quote from the classic book The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, the main character is directly talking to a brown ladybug in the garden. Here, the ladybug represents a warning, mystery, and protection.
Quote by J. Patrick Lewis
The Ladybug wears no disguises.
She is just what she advertises.
A speckled spectacle of spring,
A fashion statement on the wing….
A miniature orange kite.
A tiny dot-to-dot delight.”
Here the ladybug is a symbol of grace and beauty as the speaker describes its looks and praises the color as well as the dots on it.
Poem by Thomas Ashe
O lady-bird, O lady-bird,
With your red coat spotted black!
And your flutterings of gauzy wings,
Bringing the summer back!
And a better hope to me
Of a summer I shall see
In this heart, with all your beauty stirr’d,
O lady-bird, my lady-bird!
In this poem, the poet is mesmerized by the ladybug’s beauty. He praises the ladybug’s look while expressing hope as the season changes. Here the ladybug is also a symbol of beauty, hope, and transformation.
To the Burnie Bee by Robert Southey
Back o’er thy shoulders throw those ruby shards,
With many a tiny coal-black freckle deckt,
My watchful look thy loitering saunter guards,
My ready hand thy footstep shall protect…
So shall the fairy-train by glow-worm light
With rainbow tints thy folding pennons fret,
Thy scaly breast in deeper azure dight,
Thy burnish’d armour speck with glossier jet…
In this example, a ladybug is compared to a mythical creature with the supernatural quality of a guardian animal. Hence in this poem, a ladybug is a symbol of protection as well as beauty.