For as long as people have known that a smudge of ash rubbed into an opening in the skin would leave a permanent mark, tattoos have been a facet of society. Every people on the planet have had a tradition of tattooing, from the ocean-faring Polynesians that spread their culture from Tahiti to Hawaii and New Zealand, to the ancient Egyptians and the nomadic peoples of Africa, to both North and South America and the ancient peoples of Eurasia and the Middle East. Tattoos have been used to mark rites of passage, offer relief from pain and illness, provide magical protection against evil, or carry an identifying family mark. While the idea of having a tattoo has been, up until recently, considered a risqué activity of a certain subsection of the population, the reality is that getting a tattoo has been a fairly ordinary thing for most people to do for thousands of years. Some topics include tattoos and circus performers, tattoo machines, medicinal effects of inking, tattoos in literature and films, and more. The book covers the earliest known examples of tattoos to the more recent innovations in the field, such as ultraviolet ink, and temporary tattoos containing one's personal and financial data.