The History of Tattoos

Tattoos are a hot topic today. People get tattoos for many reasons. Millions of styles have been used and continue to be created. But tattoos are not new. They have been around for ages.

No one can really say when the history of tattoos began. The oldest known tattoo was discovered in 1991. It was found on a mummy known as Oetzi, an Iceman dated to be at least 5300 years old. His tattoos consist of horizontal and vertical lines. There is some debate about why the tattoos are there.

The common idea is that the tattoos were done for medical purposes. Oetzi is fifty-seven tattoos are located over various joints of the body. The idea is that the tattoos were made while a form of acupuncture was administered to relieve painful joints. Today, the same sites used for acupuncture. Other ideas range from social status and ritual markings to tribal marks or simple preference.

Prior to finding Oetzi, the Russians excavated bodies that were determined to be over 2400 years. These mummies were found in the Altai Mountains in Siberia. Instead of lines, their tattoos are in the form of animals both real and imaginary. Many of these tattoos are thought to be decorative only while others appear to be a symbol of status rank.

The Egyptians have one of the most well known cultures for tattoos. Dating back to 2100 BC, discovered mummies have been found to be covered in various tattoos. Women flaunted tattoo designs that were restricted to women. These designs were mostly a series of lines and dots around the body. Tattoos among the Egyptians believed to have been forms of ritual markings.

In Japan, tattoos were first used on clay figures. These human shaped figures represented a deceased person was found in the tombs of the person they resembled. The tattoos were carved or painted on the faces of the figures. It is thought that these markings have religious or magical significance. The figures have been found in graves dating from 3000 BC.

Japan's first documented tattoo is from 297 AD and has proven to be for decorative purposes. Tattoo artists were known as  Horiz  in Japan. The Horiz were recognized as masters and eventually created the full body suit tattoo.

Many years later, tattoos made widely popular by the circus. Actions are performed by people completely covered in tattoos. Individuals are known only for his many tattoos. Protectors of the circus are enamored by the extravagant and colorful tattoos of circus performers resulting in an increased number of tattoos all over the world.

Tattoos have been found in the history of the world. They have been determined to be a representation of a number of things like social status, religion and many times just for decoration. Found in both men and women, are tattoos found in every shape, size and color pattern imaginable. Whether they have been found to be something that was once held sacred or they're just for decoration, tattoos have been around for ages and will continue to be around for ages to come.

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