The Berber Tattoos and Designs in Moroccan Rugs
Meanings of Berber Tattoos Motifs in Rugs from Morocco
Berber Tattoos - Tattooing has a long and complex history in Africa. The Berber tribe, specifically, has been engaged in tattooing symbolic motifs on their bodies for centuries. Berber tattoo motifs range from animal and plant figures, to spiritual and abstract designs.
These tattoos were used for many different purposes, but almost all of them are seen as a way to ward off or protect oneself from evil spirits. Berber tattoo designs can be found plentifully on vintage Moroccan rugs. It is the Berber women who weave, passing motifs and weaving techniques from mother to daughter.
Traditional Moroccan Berber designs include checks, triangles, zigzags, crosses and stars.
Designs are a combination of indigenous motifs, those adapted from Islam and those from other African cultures. The design language identifies the village and lineage of the woman. Motifs symbolize energy, god’s blessings, power, and protection. The spiritual power and protective properties of these symbols is believed to ward off the evil eye.