08.06.09 / Author: zoey
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Note: This page is about Polynesian Tattoos.
To find out more about creating your own tattoo designs, please visit the websites below.
Polynesian tattoos are considered tribal tattoos because of their origin and epoch. Years ago, designs of Polynesian tattoos became popular with typical tattoo enthusiasts and the New Age era.
Even if you are not from the islands of Polynesia, you will surely appreciate the intricacy of the ancient art. Hence Polynesian tattoos have garnered some serious attention from today’s generation.
What’s with Polynesian Tattoos?
Here is a brief history about Polynesian tattoos and how they came about.
Polynesia is a group of islands composed of The Cook Islands, Samoa, Easter Island, Tonga, Tahiti, French Polynesia, Hawaii, and many more which are scattered throughout the Pacific Ocean. The Polynesian islands had (and have) a solid grip of their native culture; hence the commencement of the art of tattooing.
The famous tribal tattoo designs of the present era can be traced back to the area of the Polynesian islands. In fact, the word “tattoo” originated from Polynesian word “tatao” which means to tap; while the Tahitian word “tatu” means to mark something.
The Polynesians would show off their works of art through body decorations. Tattooing became a means of expressing their native culture.
Polynesian tattoos are of two types – the Enata, and the Etua. The Enata Polynesian tattoos are natural designs to represent origins, life history, type of work, social level, and the like. So sailors would have a ship or anchor symbol as tattoo, and a fisherman would have something else related to his type of work. The Etua Polynesian tattoos, on the other hand, depict a strong spiritual or religious representation to the symbols. The emblem would illustrate tribal honor to a person or group of persons. The symbols would also suggest the gods’ fortification.
In today’s generation, the essence and significance of the Polynesian tattoos are no longer as strong and vital as in the past. The meaning has gradually died out because of slackness in culture preservation. However, in spite of the fading symbol essence, Polynesian tattoos are still popular today simply because of what they traditionally meant and symbolized for.
There are numerous Polynesian tattoo designs which have gained popularity even until now. Some of which are the tiki, the dolphin, the ray, the shark, the gecko, abstract symbolic designs, and so on. Tiki is a god and is popularly portrayed with his eyes closed. The natives believe that even without the tiki’s eyes, he can still sense danger. Polynesian tattoos with shark’s teeth symbolize protection; turtles represent long life and fertility; gecko depicts fear and awe.
With the various Polynesian tattoos available, choosing the best one is admittedly challenging. The tribal style Polynesian tattoos will absolutely captivate you whatever design it may be. With the whimsical and intricate abstract figures, you can never get bored taking your pick.
Since Polynesian tattoos are tribal tattoos, you can combine the elements of nature then be assured of a very wide variety of selection! You can consider wearing the moon, clouds, sun, and stars. Or you can go for the forces of nature such as water, fire, wind, and more.