Three Things You Didn’t Know About Tattoos
1. Where Does the Word ‘Tattoos’ Come From?
‘Tatau’ is a Polynesian noun. The word supposedly comes from this community, which was one of the early pioneers of tattoos. Tatau means puncture or a mark made on the skin. This is only one theory however.
The other theory is that the word is actually onomatopoeic. The word tatau supposedly comes from the tapping sound that early implements made when tapping art onto the skin.
Regardless of which theory is true, the word was westernised over many centuries.
2. It’s Possible to Make Tattoos with What?
If you thought that you needed the advanced guns of today to create tattoos, you’re dead wrong. Prison artists have displayed the methods of producing tattoos with what they have around them, which is usually very little. Here are some of the tools found in use in prisons.
• CD player motors.
To produce ink, some Russian prisons melted the heels of boots and mixed the resulting liquid in with blood or urine.
Remember, as long as the tools used mimic the effect of a modern gun, it will work as intended. Do bear in mind that these homemade guns aren’t necessarily safe and shouldn’t be tried at home.
3. The Meaning of Tattoos on Sailors
Ask someone for a group that’s likely to have body art and they’ll say sailors. They made them famous in the west, but they weren’t random scrawls designed to make them look tough. Early sailors had different meanings, depending on where they came from and what they did.
A turtle once meant that a sailor had crossed the equator. If the sailor had a full-rigged ship, this was a sign that he navigated the Cape Horn. A dragon showed that the sailor had spent time working in China.
The traditional anchor tattoos were found on modern sailors and were nowhere near as common as people think.
These are the three interesting facts about body art you should know about. They’re part of what makes body art one of the most intriguing subjects in the world today. What is your favourite fact about body art?