Hippopotamus Symbolism – Meaning of the Hippo Spirit Animal

The hippopotamus is one of the most dangerous land animals in the world. It’s aggressive, has huge teeth, and weighs over two thousand pounds. Hippos are mighty creatures that often appear as spirit animals. They’re symbols of great skills in problem-solving, confidence, self-reliance, and strength. If you feel close to hippos, consider making them your spirit animal. Keep reading to discover everything about hippo spirit animal meaning and symbolism.

What does the Hippopotamus Symbolize?

The hippopotamus has been a revered symbol in Ancient Egyptian mythology, folklore, and symbolism for centuries. Hippos have been associated with fertility, childbirth, protection, strength, power, and new beginnings.

The hippo symbolizes strength, courage, power, and resourcefulness. Hippos show up in your life to remind you that you have all the resources needed to overcome difficult challenges.

They can represent an ability to take on anything thrown your way with confidence and grace. Hippos also represent protection and fertility. Hippos are often seen as a symbol of family and community, and their presence can be a reminder to work hard for the ones you love.

Lastly, hippos are associated with water and emotions. This means that they could ask you to dive deeper into your innermost feelings and express them more freely.

What Does It Mean When You See a Hippopotamus?

A Hippopotamus is known to symbolize protection, power, and strength. It is thought that Hippos provide strength and safety to those in need, which could explain why they are often seen as a powerful force in many cultures. Hippos also represent fertility, abundance, and good luck, making them an important creature in folklore.

What Does the Hippopotamus Spirit Animal Mean?

The Hippopotamus Spirit Animal can be a powerful reminder of your strength and courage.

Hippos remind us to stay resourceful in life, no matter the challenge.

It’s also a sign that you should take a deeper look at your emotions and make sure they are expressed openly and honestly.

Finally, Hippos offer protection to those who need it and symbolize good luck and abundance.

By understanding the Hippopotamus Spirit Animal’s meaning, you can make sure that your life is filled with strength, courage, resourcefulness and abundance.

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Hippopotamus facts

  • Hippopotamuses are massive, semi-aquatic mammals native to the rivers and lakes of sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Hippos are social animals living in large groups, typically around 30 individuals.
  • Hippopotamuses have thick, grayish-brown skin and a barrel-shaped body with short legs and stubby tails.
  • Their eyes, ears, and nostrils are located near the top of their head, allowing them to stay mostly submerged in water.
  • Hippos can hold their breath for up to five minutes and reach speeds of up to 30 mph when running on land.
  • They feed mainly on grasses but will also consume fruits and aquatic plants.
  • Hippos are highly territorial and males will vocalize loudly to mark their territory.
  • These large mammals are incredibly powerful and can even kill crocodiles with a single bite.
  • Hippos are considered a vulnerable species due to hunting and habitat destruction, though their numbers have been slowly increasing in recent years.

What Does Hippopotamus Symbolize in Arts and Literature?

Hippopotamuses have a rich symbolism in art and literature. In Ancient Egypt, the Hippopotamus was associated with the goddess Hathor, who embodied fertility and motherhood.

Hippos were also seen as symbols of strength and protection; it has been said that they could ward off evil spirits by roaring.

Hippo with book drawing

The Hippo is also featured in ancient Egyptian literature, representing strength and stability. Hippos have also been linked to the concept of rebirth and resurrection due to their habit of spending much of the day submerged in water.

In African folklore, Hippopotamuses are often seen as wise and powerful creatures who can grant wishes and bring good luck. Hippos are also believed to be symbols of fertility and plenty.

Hippos are also seen as symbols of love and devotion due to their strong family bonds. Hippopotamuses can be found in a variety of art forms, from sculptures and paintings to literature and music. Hippo symbolism is often used to represent strength, resilience, fertility, protection, and luck.

Hippopotamus Power Animal

The Hippopotamus power animal is a symbol of fertility and abundance, as hippos are able to produce large litters of babies.


They also represent strength and courage, capable of protecting themselves against any threats with their size and sharp tusks.

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Hippos also have the ability to stay deeply connected to their emotions, giving them the capacity for deep introspection and emotional understanding.

They are also symbols of water, as they spend much of their time in rivers and lakes. This connection to water can symbolize cleansing, purification, and emotional release. Hippopotamuses are seen as wise and powerful animals who possess a deep vision into the spiritual realm.

Hippopotamus Totem Animal

Hippopotamus symbolism is associated with strength, courage, protection, and stability. Hippos are often seen as a symbol of maternal protection due to the strong bonds they form with their young.

Hippo totem mask

They are also sometimes seen as a sign of good luck or abundance. Hippos are known for their incredible power and ferocity when protecting themselves or their calves, and this can represent a need for protection or strength in one’s own life.

Hippos also have strong family ties, representing loyalty and devotion to those around them. Hippos are also seen as symbols of fertility, abundance, and emotional understanding.

The Hippopotamus totem animal is an excellent reminder to stay connected to our emotions and to trust our intuition.

Hippopotamus Dream Meanings

Dreaming of a hippopotamus can mean that you are feeling strong emotions, such as anger or aggression. Alternatively, it could symbolize feelings of powerlessness and vulnerability.

sleeping woman dreaming about hippo

The hippopotamus is often associated with protection; dreaming of one may indicate that you need to take more care in protecting yourself and your boundaries. It can also suggest that you need to pay closer attention to your emotional health and well-being.

Another interpretation of this dream symbol is that it can represent a desire for greater stability in your life. The hippopotamus symbolizes strength and reliability, so dreaming of one could indicate that you want to create more security and structure in your life.

Hippopotamus Meaning in the Bible And Christianity

In the Bible, the hippopotamus is often associated with chaos, destruction, and disorder. In ancient Egypt, for example, it was believed that the hippopotamus goddess Taweret brought forth chaos into communities.

biblical hippo painting

The Book of Exodus also mentions a creature called “hippotami” that appears during plagues and inflicts destruction and terror. In the Christian tradition, hippos are considered to be symbols of evil, sin, and destruction.

They are believed to lead people astray and cause them to stray from God’s path. Hippos also appear in the New Testament as creatures of chaos and destruction associated with Satan himself. Consequently, hippos have become a powerful image for Christians in the struggle against evil and sin.

While hippos may symbolize chaos, destruction, and evil, they also often appear in Christian art as symbols of strength, courage, and power – highly valued traits in the Christian tradition.

Hippopotamus Mythology, Folklore, and Symbolism in Different Cultures


African culture has long had a deep reverence for hippopotamuses, as they are seen as powerful and wise animals.

They are associated with protection, fertility, abundance, and emotional understanding. In some African cultures, the hippo is believed to be an ancestor or protector spirit that watches over families and villages. Hippos also appear in many African folktales as wise and powerful figures.

African style hippo drawing

Hippos were sometimes seen as the ultimate symbol of strength and power, with some tribes believing that they had magical powers.

For example, in some Cameroonian folklore, a hippo is believed to have freed people from slavery by opening up the sea for them to escape on. Similarly, in Zambia, it was believed that if someone could capture a hippo, they would be granted wealth and power.

In other African cultures, hippos were seen as a symbol of fertility. In some cultures, it was believed that if someone made offerings to the spirit of the river, baby hippos would be born in abundance.

African culture has long used the hippo as a powerful symbol in many ways. The hippo has been both a source of fear and admiration, representing strength and power, fertility, protection, and abundance.

By understanding the importance of the hippo in African culture, we can gain insight into how people around the world view this majestic creature.

Ancient Egypt

Hippopotamus mythology, folklore, and symbolism in Ancient Egypt were closely intertwined. The hippo was seen as a powerful symbol of fertility and childbirth due to its association with the river Nile, providing abundant resources for ancient Egyptians.

In addition to this, hippos were also associated with the god Set – who was sometimes portrayed as being accompanied by a hippo. In some stories, Set is described as having turned himself into a hippo in order to avoid capture.

Ancient Egypt style hippo

In Ancient Egyptian mythology and folklore, the hippopotamus was also seen as being associated with the goddess Tauret – who was believed to be the protector of pregnant women and childbirth.

The goddess was often depicted as a hippo-headed woman. Tauret’s association with fertility and childbirth also extended to the afterlife, where she was believed to help protect souls on their journey into the underworld.

Hippos were also seen as symbols of strength and power in Ancient Egypt. For example, they were often depicted alongside gods in battle and were used as symbols of protection for pharaohs.

It was believed that the presence of a hippo would ward off evil forces and protect the royal household from harm.

Finally, Ancient Egyptians also associated the hippo with creation myths – particularly those involving water. In some stories, it is said that when the Nile first flooded, hippos emerged from the waters and created all life in Egypt. This is why they are often seen as symbols of fertility and new beginnings.


What does hippopotamus mean, and in what language?

Hippopotamus is derived from the Greek words “hippos” (horse) and “potamos” (river). It roughly translates to “river horse.” The word was first used in English in the mid-17th century.

Why are hippos so special?

Hippos are special because they are one of the most iconic animals in Ancient Egyptian mythology and folklore. They were seen as powerful symbols of fertility, childbirth, protection, strength, power, and new beginnings. This is why they appear so frequently in various myths and stories from this time period.

What is a hippo’s weakness?

One of the main weaknesses of hippos is their vulnerability to poachers. They are widely hunted for their meat, tusks, and other body parts that can be used in traditional medicine or sold as souvenirs. This has caused their population to decline significantly in recent years. Additionally, hippos have poor eyesight and rely on sound and smell to sense danger, making them more vulnerable to predators.

Final Words – Hippopotamus Symbolism 

The hippopotamus has long been revered in Ancient Egyptian mythology and folklore. This article has explored some of the most significant animal symbolism and meaning associated with this iconic creature.

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Hippos were seen as symbols of fertility, protection, strength, power, and new beginnings – making them a popular choice for depictions in myths and stories from this time period.

While they are no longer as widely worshipped as they once were, the hippopotamus remains an important symbol of ancient Egyptian culture.

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Christina Johnson

About the Author

My name is Christina, and I am the founder of centerspirited. Being a physiotherapist for several years I have found that many people, including myself, don’t achieve well-being only from a physical point of you. I’ve always viewed a person’s body, soul, and emotions as a whole construct of beauty. Always being a yoga enthusiast, I finally became an instructor myself. On a secret mission to capture spirituality in all of her beautiful shapes, I found myself being guided on a way through ayurvedic nutrition and lifestyle. Through this platform, I will hopefully be able to help other beautiful souls out there find their inner peace and bond with their spiritual selves.

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