Tattooing has been practiced for centuries in many cultures and spread throughout the world The Ainu, an indigenous people of Japan, traditionally had facial tattoos, as did theAustroasians. Today, one can find Atayal, Seediq, Truku, and Saisiyat of Taiwan, Berbers of Tamazgha (North Africa), Yoruba, Fulani and Hausa people of Nigeria, and Māori of New Zealand with facial tattoos. Tattooing was popular among certain ethnic groups in southern China, Polynesia, Africa, Borneo, Cambodia, Europe, Japan, the Mentawai Is-lands, MesoAmerica, New Zealand, North America and South America, the Philippines, Iron Age Britain, and Taiwan.
It is a myth that the modern revival of tattooing stems from Captain James Cook's three voyages to the South Pacific in the late 1700s. Certainly, Cook's voyages and the dissemination of the texts and images from them brought more awareness about tattooing (and, as noted above, imported the word "tattow" into Western languages), but Europeans have gotten tattooed throughout history. On Cook's first voyage in 1768, his science officer and expedition botanist,…