The Romans tattooed criminals and slaves. Learn More in these related Britannica articles:. If certain marks on the skin of the Iceman , a mummified human body dating from about bce , are tattoos, then they represent the earliest known evidence of the practice. The remarkable textiles recovered from the Pazyryk burials include the oldest woollen knotted-pile carpet known, the oldest embroidered Chinese silk, and two pieces of woven Persian fabric State Hermitage Museum, St. Get exclusive access to content from our First Edition with your subscription. In the early s a group of scientists developed inks made from nontoxic pigments that could be contained within nano-beads.
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Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. In the Americas, many Indians customarily tattooed the body or the face or both.