The Signature is a very individual trademark of identity. It recognises that as no two people have the same handwriting, then signatures can be legally binding for all types of important documents, such as wills and on bank cheques. So your signature is your personal seal, and if someone tries to copy it, that’s forgery. Handwritten signatures have been around since the sixth century, and before that practise, wax seals or cutting the lock of the hair were more commonly used.
Handwritten signatures have stood the test of time. Artist’s signatures became prevalent during the Renaissance, at a time when individual creativity was being celebrated. Their signatures became a part of the artistic process. Today we think more of our signature as our public image, as the face we show to the world. Still, like taking a peek inside a shop window, our signature reflects our inner desires.
On 18th July 2018, Lorraine Fisher at the Daily Mail commissioned me to analyse 16 signatures of famous celebrities, politicians and members of the Royal Family. The results were published as a centre double page feature in the Femail section of the Daily Mail on Friday 20th July. The online version is purely an extract of the published article, but gives a flavour of what I said (read below). Over the previous few weeks, there had already been an explosion of interest in Meghan’s signature in particular, in various newspaper articles and magazines. You can read my comments and insights below too.