Adinkra Symbols with Meanings

Adinkra are visual symbols with historical and philosophical significance originally printed on cloth which Asante royals wore to important ceremonies. Originating from the Asantes of Ghana, the symbols have assumed global importance and are now found on objects like furniture, sculpture, earthenware pots and casual wear.

Odo Nyera Fie Kwan

Odo Nyera Fie Kwan

Love does not miss its way home

Those led by love will never lose their way.

Akoma

Akoma

Heart

A symbol of patience and tolerance

Nsoromma

Nsoromma

Child of the heavens (star)

Tamfo Bebre

Tamfo Bebre

The enemy will suffer

A symbol connoting the awareness of ill-will, jealousy and envy

Denkyem

Denkyem

Crocodile

A symbol of adaptability, cleverness

Duafe

Duafe

Wooden comb

A symbol of beauty, hygiene

Nyame Nwu na Mawu

Nyame Nwu na Mawu

God won't die for me to die

A symbol of the immortality of man (man's soul)

Adwo

Adwo

Calmness

Peace, tranquility, and quiet

Dwannini Mmen

Dwannini Mmen

Ram's horns

A symbol of strength and humility

Akoma Ntoaso

Akoma Ntoaso

Extension of the heart

Charter, agreement

Abe Dua

Abe Dua

Palm tree

A symbol of wealth, resourcefulness, and self-sufficiency

Nyame Dua

Nyame Dua

God's tree (sacred stump)

A symbol of God's presence and protection

Akoben

Akoben

War horn

A symbol of vigilance and wariness

Kuronti ne Akwamu

Kuronti ne Akwamu

Kuronti and Akwamu

A symbol of democracy, sharing ideas, taking council

Akoko Nan

Akoko Nan

Leg of a hen

A symbol of nurturing coupled with discipline

Hwehwemudua

Hwehwemudua

Measuring rod (investigation rod)

A symbol of high quality and excellence

Mpatapo

Mpatapo

Pacification knot

A symbol of pacification, forgiveness, and reconciliation

Nsaa

Nsaa

A type of woven cloth

A symbol of excellence, genuineness, authenticity

Okuafo Pa

Okuafo Pa

Good farmer

A symbol of diligence, hardwork, entrepreneurship

Nkonsonkonson

Nkonsonkonson

Chain

A symbol of unity, community

Sepow

Sepow

Executioner's knife

A symbol of justice

Aban

Aban

Fortress

A symbol of strength and authority

Menso Wo Kenten

Menso Wo Kenten

I am not carrying your basket

A symbol of industry, self-reliance, and economic self-determination

Nea Onnim

Nea Onnim

He who does not know

A symbol of knowledge and learning

Funtumfunafu Denkyemfunafu

Funtumfunafu Denkyemfunafu

Conjoined crocodiles

A symbol of unity in diversity given a common destiny; sharing

Mframadan

Mframadan

Well-ventilated house

A symbol of resilience and readiness to face the vicissitudes of life

Osram ne Nsoromma

Osram ne Nsoromma

Moon and star

A symbol of faithfulness, fidelity

Woforo Dua Pa A

Woforo Dua Pa A

When you climb a good tree

A symbol of support for good causes

Gye Nyame

Gye Nyame

Except God

A symbol expressing the omnipotence of God

UAC Nkanea

UAC Nkanea

UAC lights

A symbol of technological advancement

Bese Saka

Bese Saka

Bunch of cola nuts

A symbol of afluence, power, and abundance

Mpuannum

Mpuannum

Five tufts (of hair)

A symbol of loyalty and priestly office

Epa

Epa

Handcuffs

A symbol of slavery, law and order

Dame-Dame

Dame-Dame

Chequered

A symbol of intelligence, ingenuity, and strategy

Mako

Mako

Pepper

A symbol of inequality and uneven deveopment

Mmere Dane

Mmere Dane

Time changes (times change)

A symbol of the temporariness of good times

Nkyinkyim

Nkyinkyim

Twisting

A symbol depicting the twists and turns in the journey of life

Nteasee

Nteasee

Understanding

A symbol for understanding and cooperation

Adinkrahene

Adinkrahene

King of Adinkra symbols

A symbol of leadership and charisma

Owuo Atwedee

Owuo Atwedee

Ladder of death

A symbol of the certainty and universality of death