Was there any tattooing in Ancient Egypt?

The culture of Ancient Egypt is full of mysteries, so scientists continuously study and make amazing discoveries almost every month. For example, in 2018 in the territory of the ancient necropolis of Saqqara, archaeologists found the mummies of lions, and a huge statue of a scarab and told about their mission. Now, however, researchers became slightly more aware of the importance of ancient Egyptian tattoos. Previously, for more than a centenary study of the life of the ancient Egyptians, tattoos have been discovered in only six mummies. But it turned out that they have many other embalmed bodies, just not visible to the naked eye. But scientists were able to see wearable drawings and what was it for?

Researchers are studying a mummy under infrared light

About the new study, told the online edition of Science News with reference to the statement of scientists from the U.S. state of Missouri. According to archaeologist Anne Austin, the tattooed mummy was discovered in the cemetery of Deir El-Medina, located near the Egyptian city of Luxor. The remains belonged to a woman who died about 3000 years ago. Initially, the researchers did not notice their bodies no tattoos, but looking at mummies under infrared light, they immediately noticed the different shapes and characters.

It’s amazing to work in an ancient tomb and suddenly see the tattoos on a mummified man with the help of infrared light — shared Ann Austin.

Tattoos in Ancient Egypt

On different parts of the body of one of the embalmed women, the researchers counted at least 30 tattoos. Mainly on her skin was caused a variety of shapes in the form of crosses. These tattoos not previously been seen in any of the studied in the last century mummies. Also on the woman’s body the researchers found patterns that resemble ancient Egyptian writing in hieroglyphs. All these signs prompted scientists to suggest that the woman was closely connected with the religious sphere.

On the neck of another woman the researchers discovered a tattoo of human eye. As a rule, this sign symbolized the ancient Egyptians protection. Also on both sides of her neck was caused by the image of a seated monkey, but what they symbolize, scientists find out so far failed. On the skin several other mummies, the researchers found drawings of papyrus, gods and various animals. Scientists believe that all of these signs have some meaning. To clarify this, they likely will in the future.

In using any of the tools was applied to these tattoos, scientists also still unknown. However, the art of printing on the skin originated thousands of years ago and historians, even famous methods of tattoo some people. For example, ancient inhabitants of present-day North America did the wearable drawings by means of two cactus thorns, fastened together with wooden sticks and rope. Read more about the invention of ancient peoples can be found in our special article.