Monkey King Tattoo

The Monkey King is a Chinese story based on a real monk who walked on foot from China to what is now India to recover the true Buddhist holy books. When he returned to China he translated the Sutras into Chinese, contributing to the development of Buddhism in China.

monkey king James Acrow
Monkey King full sleeve by James Acrow at Slow Down tattoo in Vancouver.

Monkey king is the story of this monk, mixed with Chinese legends, fairy tales, supernatural stories, and popular beliefs. Monkey King is a rebellious being, born out of rock that was fertilized by the grace of Heaven and Earth. He is very intelligent and has magical powers learned from a Taoist master. He can transform himself into different beings such as trees, birds, beasts, and insects. He can travel by riding on a cloud, and can shrink or grow by using a metal rod he steals from the Dragon King after fighting him in the ocean. The Monkey King is a mischievous character who fights many battles, travels to heaven, and comes back to earth. He is trapped under a mountain for 500 years, and after being freed, must travel with the monk to ensure his safety on his journey West to the Sutras, accompanied by a pig, a sea monster, and a horse.

monkey king Adam Sky Rose Gold's Tattoo, San Francisco
Monkey King Sleeve by Adam Sky at Rose Gold’s Tattoo in San Francisco. 
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Amazing black and grey back piece done at Chronic Ink tattoo.
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Realistic Monkey King done at Chronic Ink tattoo.
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Incredibly detailed sleeve done at Chronic Ink tattoo.
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Half sleeve Monkey king done at Chronic Ink tattoo.
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Half sleeve Monkey king done at Chronic Ink tattoo.

There are various versions of the Monkey King story, and all are very interesting and amusing.

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