Originating from the Tahitian word “tatau,” tattoos were introduced some 12,000 years ago. The intention behind the first tattoos varied between cultures and had an imperative function in rituals and traditions.Traversing cultures, tattoos have represented association within the society. According to an article published in National Geographic News in 2004, in Borneo (a large island in Asia), a woman might be tattooed with symbols of status or to illustrate her skills, therefore outwardly displaying her degree of marriageability. These symbols were tattooed on her forearm — as opposed to being marked around her fingers and wrists — because placement was believed to have the effect of evading disease.According to the Ainu Museum of Japan, in western Asia, the Ainu people also used tattoos to signify social status; girls coming of age and married women were marked to show their social standing. Kayan women had arm tattoos to emulate that of lacy gloves, a symbol of affluence. The National Geographic News article also details the process of Dayak warriors tattooing their hands with their first kills, and Polynesians were tattooed to mark tribal ranks.In Western cultures, tattooing was prominent amongst the Danes, the Norse and the Saxons, who utilized the tattoos to portray family crests.