Decoding Symbols of Jealousy (24 Symbols)


All right! Let’s dive into the world of symbols that have been used since history to represent what is one of the most complicated human feelings: jealousy.


Jealousy, that green-eyed monster Shakespeare so eloquently wrote on, is an emotion as old as time itself among human beings. Took a bit to explain as in several different ways since it such a mix of feelings such as envy, resentment, not good enough, and more. But have you ever wondered how this emotion been symbolized in different cultures and eras of the world? Let us take a trip to somewhat grab the cultural and historic meaning of symbols attached to jealousy.

Understanding the Emotion Called Jealousy

The feel that jealousy derives is like that godforsaken itch you cannot find on your body. Jealousy is such a complex emotion that could ignite because of a series of situations, from when a partner takes interest in another to even when one’s colleague is elevated. Though this has been seen through this negative light, jealousy is, in fact, one of the driving forces behind ambition and wanting. It’s a feeling that reminds us of humanity, our vulnerabilities as well as our deepest desires.

The Cultural and Historical Importance of Symbols of Jealousy

Historically, cultures across the world have always used symbols to represent, communicate feelings, beliefs, and values. As this is the universal emotion, jealousy possesses its set of symbols. The symbols are exactly a mirror of society and the place of reflection of its ideas about the impact that this emotion may cause on human relationships. From flowers, to animals and birds – the various symbols have come to be associated with this feeling on their own right, each talking about a different story of human experiences and cultural values.

Floral Symbols of Jealousy

A walk through a garden – and sometimes an individual can feel emotions at its crescendo. Flowers, with their bright splashes of colours and tender petals, aren’t just treat for the eye. They are messengers of feelings since time immemorial. And guess what? Some have been proclaiming tales of jealousy since time immemorial too. So let’s tiptoe through the garden and unveil these floral tales of envy.

Hyacinth 1. Hyacinth (Yellow): Misfortune and Jealousy

Imagine a flower so beautiful, yet dirtied with stories of tragedy. This kind of hyacinth with radiant petals would be in most cases associated with some sort of a misfortune or jealousy. According to the legend, bloody stems of the yellow variety of this flower were said to have grown out of the blood shed in jealous quarrel between two gods over a young boy beautiful as a blooming flower and whose name was Hyacinthus. A stark reminder that beauty and pain have a way to coexist not only but somehow mingle.

2. Marigolds: Desolation and Grief over Love

The fiery hued marigolds seem to be the sun itself imprisoned by the respective petals. And yet behind all of that brilliance, it is indeed a story of desolation and grief over love. In other cultures, the giving of marigolds is a silent slap in a relationship to convey jealousies or discontent. A pretty, but sad symbolic representation of love complexity.

Yellow Rose 3. Yellow Rose: Unfaithfulness and Jealousy

Roses are the classic symbol of love, right? Change up the color scheme a little and you have yellow roses- the ones that represent things like cheating and jealousy. It’s almost like nature’s way of going, “Even in love, there are different shades of gray. or, well, yellow.” So the next time you’re given a bunch of yellow roses, you may want to inquire with its sender just to make sure.

4. Himalayan Honeysuckle (Jealousy or Pheasant Berry shrub): Envy turned into Bitterness

From a plant called the “Jealousy shrub,” this name says it all and what juicy story it holds for us. The Himalayan Honeysuckle speaks to envy turned into bitterness all in one name. While its alluring berries and flowers might draw you in, its symbolism serves as the reminder of how the bitter taste envy can leave behind.

5. Fofo Plant: Resentment and Envy

The Fofo plant, which takes this peculiar appearance, stands emblematic of resentment and envy in some cultures. It’s formed evidence of jealousy as a part of not only human emotion but more than that; it’s traces deeply rooted in nature and presented in different forms and symbols. Thorn Bush

6. Thorn Bush: Pain and Discomfort

Been pricked by a thorn sometime? Ouch, isn’t it? The thorn bush with its sharp spikes is an obvious example of the pain and unhappiness that jealousy can inflict. It’s Mother Nature telling you to “proceed with caution, for jealousy will hurt.”

Finally! A garden of emotions, each flower accentuating its own tale of envy. Such is its power that even nature in full glory can portray the intricacies of human beings’ emotions. However, remember that while it’s natural to feel jealous sometimes, it’s also important to water the flowers of understanding and love in our gardens.

Animal Symbols for Jealousy

Dog 7. Dog: Possession and Guarding

Ever seen a dog take it upon itself to guard its favorite toy or growl when someone gets too close to their human? Yep, canice jealousy right there! Dogs are usually possessive creatures due to their fierce loyalty and protectiveness. Keeping in line with its meaning, “This is mine and I got my eye on you, buddy!” A little bit of that “ruff” love, eh?

8. Snake: Deception and Envy

The snake, silently slithering, has for since time immemorial been an embodiment of deception and envy. Really? Think about that. From ages past to the ageless modern tales, they are usually represented as very envious beings, who constantly wait for the right moment to strike. Their gaze that mesmerizes? That is their scheming their next envious move.

Beware the green-eyed snake!

9. Scorpion: Revenge and Resentment

With a sting that can also leave you reeling, scorpions are true representatives of revenge and resentment.

Which brings me to the scorpion — quite possibly the epitome of that age-old saying, “Hell hath no fury like a creature scorned.” So, should you ever cross paths with a scorpion, remember it’s not just their sting that you should be wary of — so too is the brewing jealousy within.

Vulture 10. Vulture: Waiting for Failure

Circle overhead, klang cebok, waiting for the right moment to swoop down: a vulture is the ultimate symbol of waiting for someone’s failure. It’s as if they have this natural sense of schadenfreude, feeling pleasure in people’s misfortune. A stark reminder that at times, jealousy can make us wish for others’ doom.

11. Rat: Sneakiness and Betrayal

Quick, sneaky, and always on the lookout, rats would be sneakiness and betrayal personified.

They are the little whispers in the dark, silent observers just waiting for the proper opening to give into their jealous instincts. But hey, no offense to our rodent friends; it’s just nature’s way of showing sometimes jealousy can manifest in the tiniest of creatures.

And there you have it! A wild ride across the animal kingdom exploring the many faces of greed. It’s also intriguing how these creatures, in their own unique ways, share the same features with our feelings of being envious and jealous. However, do remember, while it is probably okay to be jealous from time to time, it is equally important to focus those feelings such that something positive might be done out of them.

After all, we are a part of this great, connected web of life.

Symbols in Mythology and History

Well now that we have covered the basics, let’s have some fun! Gather round, history buffs because now we’re delving deep into the annals of time where legends were born and myths were woven.

Jealousy is that age old emotion, it’s been personified and symbolized in myriad ways through history. So let’s take a trip back and learn the stories of envy that still resonate through time.

12. Pthonus: The Personification of Jealousy and Envy

Let me begin with a name that just might not ring people’s ears for long: Pthonus. In ancient Greek mythology, Pthonus was the very embodiment of jealousy and envy. Talk about being so jealous that one names the emotion after you!

Pthonus always lurked in the shadows, whispering doubt and sowing discord.undefinedA poignant reminder of how unchecked jealousy can indeed destroy us from within, very much like how Pthonus was destroyed by his nature.

13. Hydra: Multi-Headed Envy

You know the Hydra? That many-headed serpent from Greek mythology? For every one you cut off, two more spring up in place of it. Sounds like envy is just growing! The Hydra is a perfect metaphor for how such jealousy can multiply, if we don’t address it. Cut down one envious thought, and two more might take its place. It’s a battle, but not an unwinnable one!

14. Leviathan: Envy from the Deep

The biblical stories have so much filled in them that any reader can explore its depth of envy including the Leviathan. This huge sea monster symbolizes the overwhelming waves of envy that sweep round us. But like the Leviathan in the bottom of the ocean, jealousy can be within us lying dormant.

In any event, all monsters have a weakness and the key is to overcome the monster that lives inside.

15. Green-Eyed Monster: The Classic Metaphor for Jealousy

And then, of course, there’s the term that we all have heard: the “green-eyed monster.” Those words that have become popular by none other than Shakespeare describe jealousy as a creature that can take over us; it makes us imagine how our eyes become green out of envy.

It’s a clear reminder that jealousy left unchecked can change us leaving us unrecognizable even to ourselves.

And there you have it, a whirlwind tour through the myths and legends that have shaped our understanding of jealousy. These tales, as old as time, serve as a mirror, reflecting our own struggles with the emotion of greed and reminding us of the importance of self-awareness and growth.

So, the next time that green-eyed monster tries to rear its head, remind these stories and face it head on with courage and wisdom.

The Objects and Elements Symbolizing Jealousy

Hey there, fellas explorers of the human psyche! Ever thought what all objects or elements make us feel jealous of? Well, jealousy, that green-eyed monster has a few symbols for it too. Let’s delve into the world of objects and elements which historically have been related to this strong emotion.

Stay tuned, it will be an exciting journey!

16. Broken Mirror: Broken Trust and Envy

You know the saying, “Breaking a mirror brings seven years of bad luck”? Breaking mirrors are supposed to result in seven years of bad luck, but really, other than the superstition, breaking a mirror often symbolizes broken trust and maybe envy. Just as a mirror reflects the same image back to us, trust reflects our faith on someone.

And when that very trust is crushed by the fangs of envy, it shatters into shards as a mirror does. Powerful reminder to be careful about relations!

17. Evil Eye: Malice and Envy

The universally accepted representation is the ‘Evil Eye’. Often utilized as an amulet, it’s said to protect its carriers from evil gazes of contempt. It exhibits truly how much most societies are dreaded out of covetousness.

So now, if you have that cute little charm of a blue eye hanging somewhere, know the deeper meaning!

Spider Web 18. Spider Web: Entrapment by Jealousy

Like a spider to its prey, jealousy can snare us in its web of negativity.

It is such a sticky emotion that leaves one tangled just like flies wrapped up in a spider’s web. The next time you’ll walk into a web, think of it as a reminder to set you free from the clutches of envy.

19. Dark Cloud: Looming Jealousy

Just like a dark cloud on the horizon, threatens the presence of jealousy loom over our hearts signifying an impending storm that will darken and shadow our happiness making life appear gloomy. But as they say every cloud has a silver lining and it is only within our self-awareness that we can penetrate through the clouds of jealousy and continue to live life as if they don’t exist.

Dagger 20. Dagger: Harm from Envy

The sharply menacing dagger is an icon of harm and betrayal, more often than not from envy. It’s a reminder of the depth people might go to while swept away by jealousy.

But as they say it’s not about a dagger but the hand that wields. It’s all about controlling that hand and let it not be the envy of the universe to dictate our actions.

21. Fire: Consuming Jealousy

Fire, with its scorching flames, can very well be a symbol to represent the consuming nature of jealousy. Just as fire consumes everything in its path, unchecked jealousy can also eat away our peace of mind. But then, like fire, even jealousy has the capacity to be controlled and used properly. It’s just about finding that balance!

22. Venom: Poisonous Thoughts and Feelings

Venom, the dead potency of its poison as it is, pictures the poisonous thoughts and feelings jealousy can inject in our mind. A single drop may be enough to taint our perspective with such poison so that we will see everything through the hue of envy. But, if we will have the right antidote in knowing ourselves and in understanding others, we will be able to neutralize its effects.

And there you have it!
A tour through the symbols that manifest one of the most potent human emotions.

These symbols remind that the power of jealousy is nothing to laugh at; that understandings and control are important.
So next time, when you come across these symbols, just take pause and ensure the green-eyed monster is kept at bay.

Colors And Abstract Symbols

Alright, color enthusiasts and symbol sleuths, let’s dive into the vibrant world of colors and abstract symbols that speak to – dun dun duuuunnn – jealousies. These might seem simple at first blush, but they are packed with layers of meanings. Ready to break it all down? Let’s go!

23. Green Color: Universal Color of Envy

Ever wonder why the saying, “green with envy?” In many cultures, green means jealousy.

Think of it as the ’emotraffic’, signaling, “Hey, watch out! Jealousy ahead!” But green? Some believe it’s because of the sickly complexion one might get when feeling envy. Some others think it has something to do with the green-eyed monster metaphor. Whatever the origin, green has firmly planted its roots as the go-to color for envy.

24. Devil: Temptation and Resentment

And, now, a symbol with a little spice!

The devil, often depicted as having horns and holding a pitchfork, represents temptation and spite. When we picture the devil whispering jealous thoughts to one’s ear, it is an amazing image to portray self-loathing and envy.

The devil represents the darker sides of human emotions that push us closer to getting into our animal behaviour. But remember always, there’s an angel on the other shoulder reminding us to choose the path of understanding and compassion.


Phew! Well, that was some ride through the complex labyrinth of symbols denoting jealousy, isn’t it? From flowers to mythological creatures, from inanimate objects to colors, these symbols have taken us on a foray into the human mind and its association with one of the strongest emotions.

When jealousy is unchecked, it is the same as fire, destroying everything in its path.

But through understanding and self-awareness, it can be channeled to serve personal growth.

The symbols we’ve learn have functioned as symbols for jealousy’s power and influence.
They urge us to reflect, understand, and ultimately overcome this emotion.

So the next time that you come upon a yellow rose or a green hue just recall the deeper meanings involved. Grasping what you can from them may just help you to stride your days in a path of personal growth and understanding. After all, it’s too short of a life to let the green-eyed monster hold sway – right?


Remember understanding our emotions and its symbols are the first steps towards a more enlighten and harmonious existence.