Frog Symbolism: What Do Frogs Represent?

By Snaketracks / November 11, 2019
frog symbolism

Frog Symbolism

For many cultures around the world, frogs represent fortune. This is the general consensus, from modern Japan to ancient Egypt. Of course, they do have negative connotations as well.

However, the positive symbols of frogs overwhelm the negative symbolisms. This is mainly down to when they appear. In many parts of the world, frogs appear in large numbers when it rains.

These same rains mark the start of farming seasons. This has led to the frog becoming a symbol of rain, fertility and wealth.

Frog as A Symbol of Fertility

In many cultures around the world, the frog is a symbol of fertility. This is because, this amphibian is associated with rain, which in turn is associated with the start of the farming season.

Heavy rains usually lead to an explosion in frog population. These are the same rains that ensure many around the world are able to farm.

For instance, many in Japan regard the frog as god of rainfall and is associated with the Japanese raining season – Tsuyu (梅雨). Similarly, among the Native Americans such as the Navajo, the frog brings rain.

The same can be said of the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans. Similarly, among the early Hindus, when frogs appeared out of nothing and started to croak, the monsoon rains were never far off.

Frogs are able to notice changes in atmospheric conditions that humans are unable to. The presence of the frogs are never late and symbolize the start of the raining season.

Frog as A Symbol of Prosperity

The frog is also seen as a symbol of prosperity. According to Feng Shui, the money frog is supposed to attract and protect wealth in homes and businesses.

This frog is usually a figurine placed in homes and offices. The money frog or golden frog is based on the Jin Chan spirit which is said to bring news of wealth and prosperity during the full moon.

According to the Japanese, carrying a small frog figurine in your wallet ensures that the money you spend or lose returns to you. Similarly, carrying a small frog figurine ensured the safe return of travelers. Also, keeping a frog as a pet attracts good fortune and prosperity to the home.

Frog Symbolism in Dreams

There are reasons why you may see a frog in your dream as they convey many different messages.

  • Hearing a frog sing in your dreams usually means fulfillment and gains. These gains could be monetary, romantically, or have to do with friendship. As such, you should be on the lookout for positive gains. Both in your physical life and spiritual life.
  • If you dream about stepping on a frog, this usually has to do with you seizing an opportunity over others. It is possible you are seizing this opportunity in a nefarious way and taking advantage of others. It is up to you to decide if you wish to continue on that path, or use your power to attain positive change.
  • A dream about consuming a frog could mean a prosperous and peaceful life. You have to remember that, frog is a common cuisine in many places around the world, especially East Asia. If you live in a place where frog is a popular food choice, you could simply be dreaming about your lunch. However, for people who hardly ever eat frog, a dream about eating frogs signifies a peaceful and fulfilling life.
  • A dream of a frog on a stone usually indicates the opportunity of great prosperity in your work/business. Frogs are a universal symbol of business wealth, and as such this sign should be taken with earnestness.
  • A dream about frogs in water indicates an unexpected visit or your desire for a trip/adventure. Carry along a small frog figurine and your journey will be a success.
  • A dream of a frog in grass indicated a change in your romantic life. You may be hiding your feeling from someone or your romantic life is about to take a turn for the worse or better depending on your actions.

These are not the only frog symbolisms in dreams available. However, remember that the frog represents wealth, and change, and beckons to a brighter tomorrow.

Frog Symbolism in Modern Japan

In Japan, frogs are a symbol of good fortune. Many people carry little frog figurines in their wallet as a symbol of future wealth. It is believed that doing this will allow the money spent to return to you in the future.

The word “frog” in Japanese is pronounced the same (Kaeru) as the word “return”. While the kanji/kana involved in writing the words are dissimilar, the words are pronounced the same.

There is even a Japanese saying that goes – お金が蛙。 (Money is frog.) This sounds very similar to お金が返る。 (Money returns.) Both phrases are pronounced “Okane ga kaeru”.

It is not unusual for Japanese students to have frog stickers on their lockers, books, and bags as it brings good luck. Also, many traveling Japanese and gamblers carry little frog figurines.  The frog is to ensure their safe return or help them win more money than they lose.

Frogs are also a symbol of the East Asian rainy season as they are found all around especially flooding the rice fields when it rains. The frog is regarded as the god of rainfall and is particularly associated with the Tsuyu (or Baiu) -the rainy season.

Frog Symbolism in Modern China

 In Chinese culture, the sitting frog represents fortune and is known as the money frog or golden frog. This money frog is placed in homes and workplaces to channel good fortune into our lives.

This frog is usually carved out of green or white jade and is referred to as Ch’an Chu, Zhaocai Chan Chu, or Jin Chan in China. These sitting frogs are based on the mythical frog, Jin Chan, who appears during the full moon and brings wealth-related good news.

The money frog is often depicted as a bullfrog with flared nostrils, three legs (one leg represents heaven, another represents earth, while the last represents prosperity), red eyes and sitting on a pile of coins with a single coin in the mouth.

According Feng Shui, the money frog is a charm for prosperity – it attracts and protects wealth, and repelling bad luck. There are rules on its placement. For instance, it should never be placed in the bathroom, kitchen, dining room, or bedroom. Similarly, it shouldn’t be placed facing the main door to a home or it can escape.

The frog also represents the lunar yin and is associated with the spirit Ch’ing-Wa Sheng. This frog spirit is said to bring good fortune to businesses as well as healing. It is believed that a three-legged toad lives on the moon with its 3 digits representing the three lunar phases.

The frog in a well, however, is symbolic of a person lacking vision and understanding. This is a Chinese colloquial saying.

Frog Symbolism in Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, And Rome

To the Egyptians, the frog was a symbol of both fertility and life. The presence of millions of frogs coincided with the annual flooding of the Nile. This flooding brought fertile silt, and the water needed to farm the arid lands of Egypt.

With the help of basin irrigation, the Egyptians were able to make good use of the annual Nile flooding to grow the food needed to nourish the 2 to 12 million inhabitants of ancient Egypt.

The presence of frogs meant fertile lands and bountiful harvests. As such, the frog was a symbol of fertility and life. In fact, the goddess Heqet, a frog goddess, represented fertility.

Similarly, to the Greeks and the Romans, frogs were associated with fertility and harmony. Frogs were also associated with Aphrodite, a goddess of procreation/fertility.

There were also several Classical literary works featuring frogs. One such fable was ‘The Frogs Who Desired a King’. A tale attributed to Aesop. Also a mock epic attributed to Homer called ‘The Combat Between the Frogs and the Mice’ also featured frogs.  

Frog Symbolism in Native American Culture

Frogs play important roles in several Native American cultures and mythologies across several tribes. To many, such as the Northwest Coast Native America tribes such as the Chinookan and Taku people, the frog represented springtime and renewal.

Because frogs came with the rain, they are regarded as the bringers of rain. To both the Buglé and Cuna people of Panama, the golden frog is associated with wealth, fertility and a happy afterlife.

This golden frog is similar to the Chinese money frog which is also known as the golden frog. To several Anishinaabe tribes, the frog signifies transformation and progress.

The frog is also the totem of frog clans found in several tribes such as the Chippewa tribe (here the frog totem is called Makakii), the Zuni (here the frog clam is called Tak’ya-kwe), and the Tlingit. Several Pueblo tribes of New Mexico also had frog clans.

Popular Native American frog spirits include Ablegemoo, which is a lake monster according to Wabanaki legends; Anikapeu who is the master of frogs and toads according to the Innu of Eastern Quebec and Labrador; and Paakwa A Paakwa, a katsina (spirit helper) of the Hopi people.

Frog Symbolism in Indian Culture

According to early Hindus, frogs are regarded as bringers of rain, as their croaking during the dry season signaled the advent of the raining season, which is a big deal.

The appearance of frogs followed by the croaking of thousands of frogs signaled the start of the rains. Frogs symbolize alertness and readiness, as they always respond to nature’s timing.

As frogs croak before the rains, they are considered bringers of rain, cleansing, and fertility. The visible changes over the course of their life (from tadpole to frog) make them symbolic of change, adaptability, and rebirth.

Conclusion

The frog signifies many things to many people. However, to most, the frog is the bringer of rain as well as prosperity. All over the world, the appearance of frogs coincides with the rainy season. This has made them a symbol of prosperity, and fertility.

Additionally, the ability of the frog to metamorphose throughout its lifetime – from tadpole to frog – has cemented its place as a symbol of change. Place a small frog figurine in your wallet, and let us know if it ensures lost/spent money returns to you.

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