Where Did Ear Stretching Originate? (Question)

The first recorded use of ear-stretching comes from Ancient Egypt, and can be seen in the sarcophagus of the Pharaoh Tutankhamun. In addition, anthropologists believe that the use of ear gauges originated in sub-Saharan Africa.


  • The Maasai tribes of Kenya have used ear stretching to alter their appearance for centuries. Ear stretching may have been performed in various ways within the tribe: sometimes weight was used to elongate ear lobes; other times it was the size of the piercing that brought about the stretching, much like it is today.

When did ear stretching start?

Ear stretching was also featured prominently in one of the most sophisticated civilisations of old. Dating back to 3,000 years BC the Mayans used ceramic, gold, jade, and alabaster to stretch their earlobes with the jewelry of choice being ear flares and ear spools.

Why did people start gauging their ears?

to beauty enhancement. Both men and women began spacing their ears very early, beginning in their childhood years. The initial piercing procedure would be performed with a spine from the trunk of a tree. After that, the Huaorani would stretch their lobes using wood or stone plugs of increasing size.

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What do ear gauges symbolize?

History has shown us that ear stretching was initially used to show that an individual belonged to a group or a tribe. It was accepted by the group and they were marked as being “one of us”. When someone did not have stretched ears they were considered to be an outsider or someone who did not belong to the tribe.

Why did Aztecs stretch their ears?

Ear piercings occurred among both males and females. Children first had their ears pierced at an early age. Ears would then be stretched systematically until they could hold the ear spools that were highly desired and given only to persons of a certain age as a show of maturation.

When did humans start stretching?

The History of Stretching Given that, it’s not surprising to know that the Roman empire used stretching as a means to keep their soldiers in shape. However, it wasn’t until the end of the 18th century that stretching was officially documented in an osteological study.

Why did Egyptians pierce their ears?

The first ear piercings arose amongst primitive tribes for magical purposes. An interesting fact is that only the pharaoh was allowed to have his navel pierced and anyone else who did so would be executed. Egyptians wore earrings to display their wealth and portray their beauty.

Why do Africans gauge their ears?

The Mursi tribe in Ethiopia practices the custom of stretching their ears and their mouths as a sign of respect. Traditionally around 15 years of age and before marriage, a girl’s lip and ears are pierced. The stretched ears and lip show that the girl has grown into a woman and is now able to have children.

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What is the point of no return ear stretching?

The so-called “point of no return,” which is the size or gauge after which you will not be able to go back to original size, is a range between 0g and 4g for the majority.

Did Egyptians stretch their ears?

The first recorded use of ear-stretching comes from Ancient Egypt, and can be seen in the sarcophagus of the Pharaoh Tutankhamun. In addition, anthropologists believe that the use of ear gauges originated in sub-Saharan Africa.

Why do gauged ears smell?

Why does this happen? Your body secretes a substance called sebum, sebum is an oily secretion which helps your skin keep lubricated and keep it waterproof. The sebum mixes with the dead skin cells between your ear and the jewellery to make this unpleasant odour.

When did gauging ears become popular?

Body modification grew in the ’00s As a part of this trend, ear stretching was increasing in popularity, driven in part by the emo culture in the ’00s. More places were offering ear stretching as an alternative to piercing.

What’s the point of ear stretching?

What Is Ear Stretching? Ear stretching allows people to wear unique types of jewelry in their ears known as “spacers” or “gauges.” Some people stretch their ears because of cultural traditions, while others just like how it looks.

Did indigenous Mexicans have tattoos?

Tattoos in the Mexican culture date back to the early 1300s and perhaps before that. Both the Aztecs and the Mexica, along with other Mexican native tribes used tattoos as ornamental and as a way to intimidate foes during battle.

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Did Aztecs wear gauges?

Aztec men and women wore big tubular and round earplugs that were special because they showed whether someone was a soldier, a king, a priest, or even a teacher. People must have learned to stretch the skin in their ear lobes from an early age.

Did the Aztecs have slaves?

The Aztecs additionally had landless serfs and slaves. Serfs worked land that was owned by nobles and did not live in the calpulli. Individuals became slaves (tlacotin) as a form of punishment for certain crimes or for failure to pay tribute. Prisoners of war who were not used as human sacrifices became slaves.

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