Convict Tattoos: Marked Men and Women of Australia
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Media: BOOK - hardcover, 128 pages
Author: S. Barnard
Other: colour photos, sketches, bibliog, index
Publisher: Text Publishing
This in the untold story of convict Australia. More than 160,000 convicts were transported to British penal colonies in Australia. At least 37 per cent of the men and fifteen per cent of the women were tattooed when they arrived. And their tattoos were systematically recorded as they disembarked.
Anchors for hope of all hope lost, names and initials of loved ones to be never seen again, Masonic symbols and religious motifs, patriotic statements. Images from illustrated Bibles and tableware of the time, animals, mermaids, ships and true-love knots.
'Convict Tattoos' brings to life the stories behind these records. With reproductions of individual convict entries and details of their felonry and subsequent adventures and misdemeanors, Simon Barnard reveals an extraordinary side of Australia's history.
Isaac Comer's Yard
The Black Books
Seeing in Believing
The Criminal Code
The Finer Points
Adam and Eve
'D' for Deserter
Letters and Numbers
Skull and Crossbones
'When This You See'
Having the Last Word
Simon Barnard provides another essential convict book. Convict Tattoos compliments his "A-Z of Convicts in Van Diemen's Land" book and has been prepared in the same style. He is very descriptive and his drawings, particularly of convicts based upon their indent descriptions, bring the book to life.
Understanding the meaning of tattoos helps to get into the mindset of the convict.