The Hidden Messages Behind Trump’s Evolving Signature
Between the Lines

The Hidden Messages Behind Trump’s Evolving Signature

© Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

Whether you believe in handwriting analysis or not, it’s fun to hear how graphologists interpret the signatures of famous people. In September 2015, Politico Magazine asked Michelle Dresbold, who analyzes handwriting for the U.S. Secret Service, to evaluate the signatures the presidential candidates. Here’s what she said about then candidate Donald Trump:

Donald Trump’s signature has absolutely no curves, only angles. Curves in handwriting show softness, nurturing and a maternal nature. Angles show a writer who is feeling angry, determined, fearful, competitive or challenged. When a script is completely devoid of curves, the writer lacks empathy and craves power, prestige and admiration. Besides the bigheadedness that shows in this script, there is something else that is rather over-sized—the “p” in “Trump.” This large phallic symbol shouts, “Me … big hunk of man.”

If Dresbold’s analysis is even mildly correct, Trump has made a huge leap toward power since the election. Note, in particular, that the ‘p’ is now the largest element in the signature. The dramatic difference between the two signatures over the last 16 months is the difference between an uncertain candidate and a triumphant sitting president.

Donald Trump signatures

Other analysts have examined the signature. Tracey Trussell of the British Institute of Graphologists explains in the The Independent that the large writing, upright slant and long tall letters indicate a whole host of characteristics about Mr. Trump. Ms. Trussell says: “His signature transmits wild ambition, dynamism, bravery and fearlessness ... He's hungry for power and has both determination and stubbornness in spades.” She claims that Mr. Trump's style indicates that, despite his forceful nature, he is protective too, especially when it comes to his family.

CNN quotes graphologist Kathi McKnight on Trump’s signature: "Needle-sharp points and wedges throughout reveal acute analytical and lightning speed quick thinking. No softness is found anywhere in his handwriting.”

At Quartz, handwriting expert Marc J. Seifer, who observed the ceremonial signing, noted how deliberate Trump’s penmanship was. He sees Trump’s strokes as a mirror of his leadership style. “I also noticed that the last letter ‘d’ is made by moving to the left instead of the right, which reflects his nature, which goes against the grain,” he notes. “The use of all angles relates to his aggressive nature and tendency to see things black or white, one way or the other, with little room for compromise.”