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Facts about Tattoos

Tattooing is defined as a kind of body alteration wherein sharp tools, particularly fine needles, that contains ink or other kind of marking agents, are repeatedly driven into the upper layer of skin to form an image. Tattoos have been enjoying a kind of renaissance lately. People from all walks of life, previously inhibited, are now enjoying the art without any of the typical stigma to worry about. Tattoo’s present name was derived from the Polynesian word tatau, meaning “to tap” and later from the Tahitian word tatu, which means “to mark”, where the present pronunciation was borrowed into the English language.

Tattoos have been used in one form or another, throughout the world, since the beginning of recorded history. The oldest found tattoo was of an Egyptian female mummy, dated 2000 BC, which is currently on display in a museum in Cairo. Many other cultures in the ancient world also bore evidence of tattooing amongst their people.  In China, during the Qing dynasty, prisoners and slaves where accorded tattoos as a form of punishment and is also used to indicate ownership. Indigenous tribes in Asia, like the Igorot from the Philippines and the Dayak from Indonesia, used tattoos to signify their rank and power in society. While the Ainu people from japan believed facial tattoos contain magic which makes them more favorable to their chosen gods.

Modern day tattooing in the west was brought about by the sea expeditions of Captain James Cook of England during the 1700’s. He brought back to England a Raiatean man, covered in tattoo, from Tahiti, and presented him to King George in exchange for a handsome sum. The event rekindled Europe’s fascination with body art, swiftly spreading across the continent and eventually across every ship port in the world. It is also the reason why sailors are always synonymous with tattoos.

We now know who to thank for all the chest tattoos for men and side tattoos for girls that some of us are wearing nowadays. Now for some fun tattoo facts:

  • During the not so distant past, urine was used in mixing the color pigments of tattoos.
  • Royalty hates tattoos nowadays, not so during the 18th and 19th century, particularly the English and Russian loyalty where the use of tattoos where considered fashionable.
  • Early sailors used tattoos as their own personal resumes. A Ship with sails meant they have gone to Cape Horn, a dragon means they have already visited China, an anchor signifies the Atlantic Ocean and a turtle means they have already traversed the equator.
  • Removing a tattoo nowadays costs almost four times the amount you paid for getting the tattoo in the first place.
  • The distinction of the human being with the most tattoos belong to Tom Leppard of Scotland who was 99.9% of his body covered in, guess what, leopard prints.
  • 40% percent of total amount of tattoo artists today are female.
  • 70% of NBA players today have tattoo.

Whatever your persuasion in life, there is no better way to express your inner rebel than having a tattoo. Just remember to specifically think of what you want before you have put anything on your body. Do it right the first time.