A Polynesian tattoo is a type of ancient art that has a lot of meanings, therefore, it has become a popular choice for enthusiasts. Its delicate designs are based on different meanings associated with the Polynesian culture.
Polynesian Tattoo History
Years ago, writing is not eminent in Polynesians. To let people know more about each other’s identity and personality, they have used art – Polynesian tattoo was born. Tattoos are more likely to indicate a person’s hierarchy status, genealogy, sexual maturity, and societal status. In 1797, Polynesian tattoos were banned when the missionaries arrived, basing the decision according to the Old Testament.
In the 1980’s, the ancient art was revived and many have enjoyed going through the procedure. However, due to the lack of knowledge about how diseases can be transferred just by sharing needles (or wooden and bone equipment in their case), the government has banned the procedure once again.
Traditional Polynesian Tattoo Designs and Images
Below our favorite picks from the industry and history when it comes to Polynesian tattoos for inspiration before you get your own poly tattoo. And do not forget, you can always get a custom tattoo first before you get the real deal!
1. Polynesian Turtle Tattoo
2. Turtle and Spear Head Polynesian
3. Tribal Polynesian Inspiration Tattoo Design
4. Tiki Shark Teeth Spear Head Polynesian Tattoo For Men
5. Tiki And Ocean Polynesian
6. Sun Turtle And Spear Head Polynesian Tattoo
7. Sun And Shark Teeth Polynesian
8. Spear Head Polynesian With Flower Tattoo
9. Spear Head Polynesian On Leg
Try a Temporary Polynesian Tattoo First
10. Spear Head Polynesian Tattoo
11. Spear Head And Shark Teeth Polynesian
12. Spear Head Polynesian Tattoo
13. Spear Head And Ocean Polynesian
14. Small Delicate Polynesian Ocean Tattoo
15. Polynesian Turtle Tattoo
16. Shark Teeth Turtle Spear Head Polynesian Tattoo
17. Shark Teeth Turtle And Spear Heads Polynesian Inspiration
18. Detailed Polynesian Inspiration Tattoo
19. Shark Teeth And Ocean Polynesian
20. Polynesian With Flower Tattoo
21. Polynesian Under Breast Tattoo
22. SnakeHead Polynesian with Spear Head Tattoo
23. Polynesian Chest and Sleeve Tattoo
24. Polynesian Chest Tattoo
25. Polynesian Tattoo On Hand
26. Polynesian Sun And Ocean Waves Tattoo
27. Polynesian Spear Head With Shark Teeth Tattoo
28. Polynesian Spear Head Tribal Tattoo
29. Polynesian Spear Head And Shark Teeth Tattoo
30. Polynesian Side Tattoo For Women
31. Polynesian Side And Lower Abdomen Side Tattoo
32. Polynesian Side And Hip Tattoo
33. Polynesian Shark Teeth With Spear Head Tribal Tattoos
34. Polynesian Shark Teeth With Ocean Waves Tattoo
35. Polynesian Shark Teeth Tribal Tattoo
36. Polynesian Shark Teeth Tattoo
37. Polynesian Ocean Symbol Tattoo
38. Multiple Polynesian Symbol
39. Ocean Wave Spear Head And Shark Teeth Polynesian
40. Enata Polynesian Design Tattoo
41. Ocean And Spear Head Polynesian Sleeve Tattoo
42. Ocean And Shark Teeth Polynesian
43. Manta Ray With Shark Teeth Polynesian Tattoo
44. Manta Ray With Ocean And Shark Teeth Polynesian
45. Kekahuna Shark Teeth Spear Head Polynesian
46.Enata Tiki Spear Head And Ocean Polynesian Tattoo
47. Combination Samoan Polynesian Tribal Tattoo
48. Chest And Abdomen Polynesian For Men
49. Different Design Polynesian Symbols Tattoo
50. Amazing Spear Head Polynesian Tattoo
51. Amazing Polynesian Tattoo On Upper Right Back
52. Polynesian Body Paint
What is the meaning behind a Polynesian Tattoo?
Polynesian tattoos are rich in designs that are being joined together to come up with a more meaningful tattoo that could sum up one’s personality, achievements and status. These are:
- Tiki – a Polynesian semi-God sublimed after being dead, that means protection against probable mishaps.
- Shells – there are two variations: seashells and turtle shells. Turtle shells symbolize fertility, longevity, wellness, and peace. Moreover, seashells symbolize intimacy and protection.
- Marquesan Cross – a popular symbol of harmony and balance among elements, Marquesan crosses were derived from turtles.
- Sun – signifies one’s position on the society, the Sun tattoo means leadership and riches.
- Ocean – Polynesians believe that when they die, their final destination would be the ocean. It is also used to fill spaces on a tattoo.
- Shark Teeth – you’ve probably seen a lot of tattoos on the samples above with shark teeth. Also known as “niho mano,” these signify power, ferocity, and adaptability. These images also refer to the Polynesian God.
- Spear Head – usually seen from fighters, it signifies courage and fight.
A Polynesian tattoo is definitely a good choice if you want something tribal. It’s popular, a bit common, but people will surely appreciate it because of its meaning and intricate designs. If you think you are not yet ready to acquire such a delicate tattoo design, you can also check out these birds and samurai tattoos.
Hey readers! I’m Jeffrey and your tattoo artist of the day;) I have been drawing and painting my whole life, and after graduating high school I decided it was time for a bigger challenge and I started drawing on people. I’m so fortunate I got to express my creativity through my body art and even more so to share my passion with my now wife Emilie. She started working with me in my tattoo shop as a piercer and I started writing about and photographing, my creations on this blog. I love to hear from you and hope you enjoy our work together!