Hawaiian tattoos: some of which are dramatically influenced by Hawaiian culture.
The concept of tattooing as a protective device seems to come through other areas of Polynesia, especially the Marquesas. There, full body tattooing was a form of armor. It guarded the warrior as if an external metal plate would guard a horseman in Europe. Influences of Polynesia are seen in the image herein – with blades, cutting point and reverse symbols of kai (water). Variations in the design denote layered meanings – most of which are known only to the owner.