Tribal Tattoos

Tribal Tattoo - Back

Tribal Tattoos

Tribal tattoos are generally abstract lines and shape designs, or they can echo the forms of plants or animals. There are four major concepts of tribal tattoo, it is the power, strength, prowess and loyalty.

The word “tribal” is an adjective word that means or comes from the word tribe. But we know, the word “tribal” is not very often used as an adjective. Tribal is more to design or art style but still connected to tribes.

Study shows that since that start of humanity, Tattoos have been made onto both sexes to decorate, enhance, and modify the skin we inherit at birth. Some Tattoos are self-motivated expressions of personal freedom and uniqueness. Most, however, have to do with traditions that mark a person as a member or nonmember of the local group, or express religious, magical, or spiritual beliefs and personal convictions.

It has been found that most (if not all) primitive tribes used some form of body marking, be they tattoos, scarifications or the use of plain, temporary body paints. This art prevailed worldwide until the arrival of civilization as we know it, when the tattoo fell into a temporary loss of popularity.


You see them everywhere- dark, bold, spiked and curved bands wrapping around arms, and legs, and snaking their way across shoulders and backs.  They help frame and enhance flowers, butterflies, birds, dragons, and thousands of other themes.  Tribal designs make immensely popular tattoos thanks to their ancient heritage and striking look, and because of their varied nature and flowing design can be placed just about anywhere and still look good.

Tribal tattooscover an astonishingly wide array of symbols and meanings, ranging from the modern, spiked look to the more traditional Polynesian talisman tattoos and everything in between.  With such a wide range, it’s important to spend some time looking at what look you’d like to go with, and if you’d like any meaning attached to your tattoo.

Tribal tattoos are the oldest known form of tattooing and date back thousands of years.  They can be linked to almost all ancient cultures, and often were used to indicate rank and wealth within the tribe.

Native American tribes were vastly different in their tattooing practices.  Some tribes were only lightly tattooed, while others here heavily tattooed.

The Witicha tribe was best known for tattooing rings around the eyes of all the men, giving them the look of raccoons.

The Maori people in New Zealand have, for hundreds of years, tattooed their faces in elaborate designs.  The designs often represented social position, wealth, and even occupation, so you can easily say that their tattoos represented who they were as a person.  The Maori’s still practice this art today, and it’s incredible to see.

Pacific and Polynesian peoples are also widely known for their tattooing skills.  In Borneo, the Dayak people believe that everything around them has a spirit, and energy.  They believe that when they tattoo objects on their skin they can draw energy from them, and they often use pictures that represent strong plants or animals for their tattoos.  Not too different than what we do today, right?

Many islands in the Pacific created “talisman” tattoos, which was a blending of specific shapes such as lines, circles, triangles and squares, each with their own meaning. When they were put together created powerful protection for the bearer, or a prayer for future wealth and joy.  They tattoos could represent things like abundance, love, safe travel, wealth, wisdom, joy, and thousands of other things.  Put together, they could tell a story.

The Celtic people, on the other hand, had no written history.  Everything was passed down orally, so little is known of their ancient history.  Their artwork has experienced an amazing resurgence in recent years, and their designs make wonderful tattoos.  Their knots have no end and no beginning, and are often used to represent never-ending life, love, and faith.


Tribal tattoos have gained in popularity with both men and women over the years, thanks in large part to their simple, striking designs.  There is no place on the body where they don’t look good, and they can be designed in tandem with other objects like butterflies, suns, tigers, fairies, or anything else you can imagine.

The most popular tribal tattoo is probably the armband, but many people get tribal on their shoulders and back as well.

Whether you go with a more traditional Polynesian tattoo, or opt for the more modern look, you can rest assured that more likely than not it’s going to look good on your skin.

You may also want to read:

Tribal Tattoos For Men
Tribal Tattoos For Women.