Cuttings in the Flesh

Concise Bible Dictionary:

From Manners and Customs of the Bible:

2: The Orientals are very fond of tattooing. Figures of birds, trees, flowers, temples, and gods are carefully and painfully marked in their flesh with colors by the puncturing of sharp needles. This is still done in India for idolatrous purposes, and, in the time of Moses, probably had some connection with idolatry. Others do it for eccentric desire of adornment, as we sometimes find our own sailors printing their names and making representations of ships, anchors, and other objects on their arms by means of needles and india-ink, the latter mingling with the blood drawn by the needles, and leaving an indelible mark of a light blue. See note on Isaiah 49:1616Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me. (Isaiah 49:16) (#321), and also on Galatians 6:1717From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. (Galatians 6:17) (#873).