It is said that Egyptian pharaohs were the only Egyptians allowed to wear navel piercings. If any other Egyptian got their navel pierced then they would face the death penalty.
However, just how true is this and why would simple Egyptians face the death penalty simply for piercing their navel?
Understanding the Myth
The first point to make is that there is no historical evidence to back up this story! Therefore it is simply a myth.
They say that only the Pharaoh was privileged enough to wear a navel piercing. It symbolised status and beauty. However, other piercings could freely be worn by other Egyptians such as earrings. It was mainly the more well off families who wore earrings and other body jewellery so any type of body piercing in Egyptian times did seem to symbolise wealth.
The navel rings that were allegedly worn by the Egyptians were created from gold. It is said that navel jewellery was particularly easy to wear for Egyptians as many had deep navels thanks to a lot of inbreeding. Those who support this navel piercing myth also say that in Egypt a pierced navel was a sign of virility and courage.
There is a possibly some history regarding navel piercings but unfortunately a lot of it does seem to be a myth.
Belly button piercing is a pure invention of the 20the century and as we know, it went mainstreem only in the early 90ies!