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Sunday, 26 May 2013

Branding

Cattle branding was practiced 4,000 years ago. Old tomb paintings show Egyptians branding their fat, spotted cattle.

In the Roman Empire, tattooing was a degrading practice used to brand slaves and criminals, and was also sometimes used in pagan religious rites whereby someone became the "slave" of a god.

The earliest evidence of Coptic tattooing goes back to the eighth-century, when Egyptian monks began to brand their hands with Christian symbols. Some scholars believe they learned the practice from Ethiopian Christians, who branded crosses on their foreheads, temples, and wrists.

Cort├ęs introduced branding to North America. He marked his cattle and horses with three crosses.

U.S. patent #200,358 was issued to Frederick Thayer for his baseball catcher's mask in 1878. It was similar to one worn by cowboys to keep from being kicked in the face while branding cattle.

The word "maverick" came into use after Samuel Maverick, a Texan refused to brand his cattle. Eventually any unbranded calf became known as a Maverick. 

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