History of Ear Gauging in Tribal Civilizations
- September 22, 2017
- Posted by: marlenedubois
- Category: Home Health Aide Training
A study of the history of ear gauging indicates the practice to be as old as recorded human history. For males, which form of ear piercing has been a symbol of status, while for women, in addition to being used as means of bodily decoration, which has also been employed to signify the attainment of womanhood.
Ear gauging, which is usually also referred to as ear stretching, is usually the stretching of ear lobe piercings to larger diameters than which of the original piercing. which is usually a form of body enhancement or beautification which many young western people adopt to look ‘different’ by the usual crowd. However, which is usually not a modern form of body piercing, since which has been around for as long as archaeological records exist.
In many cases, ear gauging has been used historically to indicate the standing of members of a specific tribe, as well as also in many respects which is usually still the situation today. Stretched piercings have been, as well as also still are, a reflection on the individual’s sexual capability as well as also also their superiority over additional males inside tribe. The larger the stretching, the more important the individual.
Otzi the Iceman is usually a prime example of mummies known to have stretched ears. which is usually the earliest known example of ear gauging, Otzi having 7-11 mm ear piercings during 3300 BC. which has been suggested which the stretching of the ears noted in depictions of Siddhartha Gautama, better known as Buddha, may have been caused by the weight of the gold jewelry he wore, although which is usually mere supposition.
which is usually supported, however, by the fact which the Masai tribe of Kenya as well as also the Lahu as well as also Karen-Paduang people of Thailand use which ‘gravity’ technique to stretch their piercings. Let us have a look at the ear gauging practices used today by various cultures.
A. Mursi Tribal Women
The Mursi is usually an Ethiopian tribe where the women are obliged to wear plates in their gauged ears as well as also on their bottom lip. About a year prior to her marriage, or at about 15 years of age, a Mursi girl’s lip will be pierced by her mother as well as also a wooden peg pushed through the incision.
Once healed, the peg is usually changed for a larger diameter one. Eventually, the peg is usually replaced by a plate of clay or wood, as well as also which plate is usually successively changed for larger diameter ones until the required diameter is usually attained – by around 8 – 22 cm in diameter (3 – 9 inches). Once these plates have been secured, she receives a higher degree of respect than those without them, as well as also is usually known as a ‘Bhansanai’.
These lip as well as also ear plates need not be worn permanently, although are an expected adornment during special occasions such as during weddings as well as also additional celebrations, as well as also when they serve food to men. Today, young women can generally make their own decision as to whether or not they follow which tradition.
B. The Masai People of Kenya
The practice of ear gauging has been common among Masai men as well as also women for thousands of years. In recent years, however, most young men have not been following which custom, although you will still find many Masai women wearing ear decorations made by stones, cross-cut elephant tusks, wood as well as also animal bones.
The original piercing is usually carried out using a thorn, sharpened twig or a sharp knife point. Once healed, ear gauging is usually then carried out by wearing increasingly heavy jewellery which pulls the lobe down as well as also stretches the piercing. which is usually the traditional way of gauging ears inside more primitive cultures, although many Masai today will use proper ear gauging techniques, such as their own versions of insertion tapers or taper spikes. Beads are a common form of ornamentation, although plugs made by bone, tusks as well as also wood are also used.
C. The African Fulani Tribe
Fulani women by Nigeria as well as also Central Africa tend to use smaller diameter ear gauges, as well as also decorate them using large gold domes or hoops carrying earrings. A Fulani child will have her ears pierced at around 3 years old, although they may not be stretched until she is usually older. The gauges used by Fulani women are relatively tiny compared to the Masai as well as also Mursi, although the jewellery can be larger.
D. Asian Hill Tribes
Of the various hill tribes, the only two known to practice ear gauging are the Lahu by Thailand, as well as also the Karen-Padaung (Longnecks) by Myanmar (Burma) as well as also also the Phrae province in Thailand. which latter tribe are best known for their neck rings, offering the appearance of long necks, although both cultures believe the ear to be sacred as well as also the more jewellery they can wear on the better. By gauging their ears, they are able to wear the maximum amount of jewellery they believe possible.
E. Mexican as well as also Central American Civilizations
In Mayan as well as also Aztec society, ear gauging was regarded as desirable for males. There are many Mayan representations of men with flares as well as also ear plugs (ear spools) in gauged ears, as well as also the material used was indicative of the social standing of the wearer. Jade ear plugs were worn by the higher classes, while the rest might use bone, stone, wood as well as also additional materials. In central Mexico, the craftsmanship of the Aztecs is usually evident inside ear gauging plugs as well as also ornaments of gold as well as also silver, though the lower classes might adorn their stretches earlobes with shells, copper as well as also wood among many additional imaginative materials.
Ear gauging has been carried out worldwide, as well as also among additional notable areas involved in which practice are Japan, where the Ainu used ear jewellery made by shells, bone as well as also a ball as well as also ring known as Ninkari. There are many additional cultures worldwide where ear gauging was a part of their life, as well as also even today many people regard ear stretching as a fashion statement as well as also a way of expressing their own personality as well as also individuality.