Monday, 20 October 2014

The History Of Tattoos

Welcome back my fellow learners, today we are going to learn about tattoos and their origins.

The phrase tattoo comes from two derivations, one which is taken from the Polynesian word ‘ta’, this means to strike something, and the Tahitian word ‘tatau’, which means marking something’.

The history of tattoos started over 5000 years ago, and is as complex as the people that indulge in them.

Tattoos are made by inserting ink beneath our skins surface. The first tattoos were probably done purely by accident. A person that had a minor wound, and then rubbed it
with a hand which are full of soot and ashes from a fire. After the wound healed, they noticed they had a mark with was permanent.

Despite societies ever growing fascination with tattoos, not to mention the popularity of them, the art of tattoos has not left much of a historical footprint.

Bronze Age
In 1991, a tattooed ice man referred to a Otzi, who was five thousand years old, made the headlines worldwide when his frozen corpse was found on a mountain which sits between Austria and Italy. This was the best preserved corpse ever found of that period. The skin has 57 tattoos, which are a cross on the left knee inside, six straight lines above the kidneys, and several parallel lines on his ankles. The position of them suggests they were applied purely for therapeutic reasons, such as arthritis.

In 1948, 120 miles between Russia and China, a Russian archaeologist, known as Sergei Rudenko started to dig at a group of tombs, high in the Altai mountains of southern and western Siberia. Mummies were discovered which date around 2400 years ago. The tattoos found on their bodies show various animals. The griffins and monsters are said to have some magical significance, but some are said to be purely for decoration. Altogether, these tattoos are thought to reflect the status of a person.

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