For years to come, we would all remember where we were when we saw Ed Sheeran’s startling lion tattoo for the first time. Except we won’t, as Ed has today revealed that the inking was in fact a hoax.

The megastar singer posted a picture on Instagram of his upper torso, where the tattoo of a lion’s head had been when he showed us the apparent artwork two weeks ago, writing underneath: “Was only joking about the lion.”

Was only joking about the lion

A photo posted by @teddysphotos on

Sheeran had originally claimed that the lion’s head tattoo, which seemed to start at the top of his torso near his neck and go all the way down to the top of his stomach and across to his nipples, was to commemorate his three sold-out gigs at Wembley Stadium back in July.

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It was originally believed that tattoo artist Kevin Paul, who has also been responsible for body art on other celebrities such as Harry Styles and Paddy Considine, had done the work on Sheeran’s torso. He told people soon after the big reveal that Ed was planning to get many more tattoos done in the future.

“Ed is nowhere near done,” Paul told The Sun. “There are going to be even bigger tattoos in the next few months. He’s going to have his entire back covered, and then across his ribs. It’ll be incredible.”

Halfway and ouch

A photo posted by @teddysphotos on

Following some seriously divided opinion on social media in the aftermath of the lion incident, Sheeran defended it on Twitter, saying: “All this kerfuffle over a tattoo. If it was black and white saying a clever phrase in a language I can't speak no one would've said anything. It's not the first weird tattoo I've got and it won't be the last. I like all of them.”

But now, the whole thing is apparently a stitch-up. Sheeran’s representatives have not commented officially on the matter.

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