Obama–A Look at the Personality Behind the Handwriting

~~Posted by InsightAnalytical-GRL

Graphology is now widely used to tell about the mind that is behind a person’s handwriting. Handwriting analysis is sometimes used by psychologists and psychiatrists as another tool to help in diagnosis of a patient. Testimony from experts is admissible in courts of law when documents are under question. Experts are also called into criminal cases; in fact, an acquaintance of mine in the UK assisted on a case involving a serial murderer, helping the police get into the mind of the perpetrator,  which led to his capture.

I’ll tell you upfront, I am NOT an expert handwriting analyst. Years ago I studied for a short time with a forensic handwriting specialist and expert witness.  And I continued with a great deal of self-study for several years. HOWEVER, that doesn’t make me an expert! But, there are certain basics in handwriting that can give general clues about someone’s basic drives and personality and hopefully, this overview will make some of them clearer. My intention is NOT to come to a conclusion about Obama, but rather, to lay out some of the indicators of his personality in his writing that the reader can mull over. For many of the specifics, I dove into my collection of books on the topic…I certainly couldn’t do all of this off the top of my head!

I took a look at Barack Obama’s handwriting using the note he left at the Western Wall while in Israel (The King David note) and one written on July 23, 2008 (no letterhead), as well as a signature on some of the campaign literature that has been pouring in.  It is impossible to do a truly complete analysis since we are not looking at originals which would show pressure and other characteristics of the handwriting. But we can find out quite a bit from the samples we have.

So, here goes. First, here’s an image of Western Wall note (The King David sample) that was attributed to Obama.   I worked from a copy that I enlarged to 8″ X 10″ inches.  I looked at the video of Obama placing the note in the wall and he appeared to force it a bit as he tried to get it into a crevice…the note I see has clear, rectangular fold lines and doesn’t look like it was “crimped,” so whether the note is real or note could be questioned.  I’m assuming the the July 23 2008 page is real since the signature looks like the one on the campaign literature. The clues in the handwriting do seem to relate to the Obama we’ve been seeing.

Here is the note placed at the Western Wall (click here for the story and a picture of Obama placing the note):

And, the signature:

And here is the second sample with a better example of Obama’s signature (probably written hurriedly) from the guestbook at Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial (The July 23 sample).


Here are some of the specific elements that I’ve examined; these are standard items frequently used in assessing a writing sample.

MarginsThe two samples show contradictory characteristics.  The one sample shows a straight left margin which is the norm.  The left margin represents the “line of society.”  The margin in the sample written on The King David stationery is uneven. An uneven left margin indicates a lack of conformity to society’s standards, not fitting into structure.  Generally, an uneven left margin can indicate hostility, one who gets out of line or someone who can’t discipline themselves to “stay in line.”  However, in this case, perhaps Obama was trying to write as if he were writing “verse” or poetry, a stanza-like presentation. More samples would be helpful in evaluating this characteristic.  One more thing to note in the King David sample…the line which runs to the edge of the right side (“instrument”). If this showed up a couple of times on a page, it would indicate impulsiveness and that the person may not learn from his mistakes.  We’d have to see more samples to ascertain if Obama really has this problem.

Lean/Angle of Slant— Slant or the horizontal movement of the writing and represents the outer display of personality, social development, and external orientation. It indicates the degree to which a person reveals their real emotional feelings to others. Obama’s writing is basically vertical. This style is associated with control and formality, a suppression of feelings.  It is also associated with diplomacy and “head over heart.” It represents orientation to the present, a concern for self, and sometimes indifference.

UPDATE: Obama, I’m told IS left-handed, according to a commentator.  But, according to what I have researched just now, regardless of handedness, a writer will still produce a slant that accurately describes the person’s ability to express his true social nature.

Pressure/Force–Since we only have access to copies of Obama’s writing, it’s hard to ascertain the pressure he uses.  However, it seems that Obama selected a pen that created a thick line, a possible preference.  Thick strokes indicate vitality and a person who looks for many ways to use their energies. Sometimes they can become so involved with what they are doing that they can forget future obligations.

Beginning and Ending Strokes–The absence of strokes leading into the first letter of the words indicates quickness in action.  As for ending strokes, which are an indicator of how the person relates to others or to his own goals, notice the long extensions on words, for example, in The King David note–“me,” and, “against,”  “just,” etc.–and in the July 23 sample– “remarkable,” “we,” “individuals”…etc.  Many ending strokes in the samples are strong, straight lines, and, as mentioned, long. Strong endings in general represent a strong drive for activity and the surrounding environment. Sometimes prolonged endings can mean the person has tenacity, a desire for conquest and shows extravagance…or keeping others at a distance. Or sometimes they just are there to take up space!

Connectives–These are strokes that connect letters together.  They can indicate a writer’s social attitudes and mental capabilities. Obama’s writing shows a mix of garlands and angles.  The garlands, as illustrated by the word “all” in the first line of the 23 July text, indicates sociability. The angles look like sharp, v-shaped forms long the bottom of their writing.  Analytical, sharp, capable of making quick decisions, this form suggests coldness. The overall connected style can indicate a rational, persistent character which can also manifest as a sense of calculation and strategy, the ability to plan to move ahead.

Baseline and ZonesHow straight a person writes reflects mood–how a person handles the mixture of intellectual, social, and emotional drives. The baseline marks the line between the basic drives of the lower zone (unconscious drives, biological and sensual needs, the past) and the social needs and everyday concerns of the middle zone (including the present, action, emotional expression, realistic expression of the ego) and the concerns of the upper zone, which involve the imagination and the intellect (including the future, fantasy, spiritual, intellectual and cultural aspirations, concepts). Evaluating handwriting and the zones is very complicated so I’m just going to mention a couple of things that jump out at me.

First, the baseline, which represents the “balancing act” between the zones. The slope of the line is fairly straight…self-controlled and steady. In the July 23 sample there is a very slight rise to the writing, particularly in the first 3 lines. A slight rise can reveal the person’s ambition, optimism and energy and restlessness. On the King David letter where Obama writes about his family and his sins in the first few lines, we see a slight downward slope. A downward slope can reveal a more sensitive, gloomier feeling. As soon as he starts talking about guarding “against pride and despair” the line straightens out again—under control.

There is one word that varies significantly from the baseline…the word “world” in the July 23 letter. It seems to rise and fall in an arch shape. It may mean that that word created a moment of confusion to the writer.

Measuring the letters to ascertain which zone is dominant takes more expertise (and time!) than I have, but there are some characteristics that stand out.

Lower Zone letter specifics

First, the lower case “g” loops, with the letter being made in what seems to be a “figure 8” stroke. The figure 8 reflects an ability to adapt, quick thought, intellectual flexibility and good intuition. But the actual loop is often huge and out of proportion with the rest of the writing. Exaggerated loops can indicate a bottled-up feelings, excessive emotional need, and showing off. (Also see the “j” loop in the word “just.”) Some of the p’s are clearly retraced (July 23 sample—“responsible,” “promise,” “proclaim”and “help” in the King David sample)—retracing loops, when the down and upstrokes overlap as one, reveals an emotional inhibition or the person feeling guarded in freely expressing his feelings. (Also an “f” –“strife” in the July 23 sample.)

Note the lower case “y’s” with the straight line thrusting down. The “y” indicates the writer’s sexual habits and abilities as well as attitudes toward money and possessions and security (including personal esteem and sense of belonging). The straight lines in the samples are just that …normal, without any bizarre twists or reversed lines. In general, we can say that the straight line down indicates determination and aggressiveness and sometimes defensiveness. Another view is that they indicate dislike and avoidance of elaboration.

Middle Zone letter specifics

The main thing I noticed here was the fluctuation in letter size, which is an indication of the stability of the person’s moods. A combination of large and small letters in the same word and line can be a flag for emotional volatility. This makes the person hard to understand and get along with and can point to inconsistencies in the way a person reacts. (Too much fluctuation in any zone can mean problems dealing with emotional stimuli.) Here in the middle zone, the zone of the present, action and everyday concerns and social life, we see a great deal of fluctuation in letter size. In the Kind David sample, note words like “Protect,” “and,” “ help,” “guard,” “pride,” “despair” (the d’s are smaller than other letters), “make.” And you can find similar fluctuation all through the July 23 sample, like “responsible,” “remarkable,” institution,” etc.

“D” stems are very interesting and show quite a bit of variation. (This is something that can relate to the Upper Zone, but I’m discussing it here because of the “base” in the middle zone.) There are a lot of short stems which can show a shrewd personality. But note the very short, retraced stems in the words “pride” and “deception” in the King David sample—and in the July 23 sample, the words “reminder,” “perished,” “dreamed,” “individuals”—perhaps indicating deflated-ego problems.

Ovals in letters like a, o, d, and g—Obama’s ovals are largely closed which shows discretion, tact and diplomacy in any revelations he may make verbally.

The “b.” See the words “remarkable,” “blessed,” “remember,” and “symbols” in the July 23 sample. It’s open at the baseline, an indicator of possible hypocrisy or dishonesty.

Upper Zone letter specifics

There are some letters with some upper loops that seem “looser’ and more swollen than most of the other letters in the upper zone. These include the “l’s we see in the first line of the July sample and the words “proclaimed,” “loved” and “like” near the end, and the words “family” at the start and “will” at the end of the King David sample. They may reveal liking an audience. Or an inflated view of the writer’s own importance and an extroverted feeling.

The t’s. The “t” is one of the most important letters for analysis and the “t-bar” (the line crossing the “t”) indicates how a person’s will power and drive are expressed in life.

First of all, Obama’s writing shows a mixture of t-bars, which can indicate conflicting goals and confusion in thought and action.

First, there are many instances where the “t” has no top crossing at all; some at the end even look like “L’s.” See words like “but,” “capacity,” “Let,” and “spirit” in the July 23 sample and “Protect,” “against,” “what,” “right,” “just,” and “instrument” in the King David note. No crossing can be due to something as simple as being hurried, careless or being absent-minded or it can indicate rebelliousness or some feeling of being down, according to some experts.

There are a number of “t’s” which connect to other letters in a “stick-figure” stroke, as in the word “to” and words like “institution,” “time,” “history,” etc. The crossings are in the middle of the “t” stem. Overall, this form indicates emotions kept under control, a direct approach and the ability to make quick decisions and some calculation. Maturity and independence are other possible characteristics. In addition, this person prefers action rather than reaction.

Then there are the “t’s” that connect to other letters and which have a “triangular” formation to the left of the stem. Words in the July 23 sample with this formation include “those,” “this,” “this (history),” “that,” “they,” and in the King David sample, “the” and “to.” The triangle represents an obstinate, determined person; some analysts describe it as a sign of being unwilling to accept responsibility. A left-pointing triangle, in general, can also point to feeling hostility to life event that have already occurred–the attitude can be bitter and the person may feel like he was treated unfairly.

Signature–Whereas the body of writing represents what a person really is, a signature represents the ego, but even more. A person’s signature represents what a person wants someone else to think of him/her.  If a signature is much different from rest of writing, then that’s an indication that the person has an unrealistic self-image or that their public image is nothing like their private behavior.  Obama’s signature is different from his controlled, vertical writing which denotes coolness. It’s obvious that Obama uses over-inflated capital letters. The bigger the letter, the bigger the pride…or, a compensation for a feeling of smallness. He wants to stand out in public and call attention to himself. His writing his legible but his signature is pretty much illegible apart from the capitals.   While he wants to communicate his thoughts, the illegible portions of the signature is another indicator of someone who doesn’t want to really communicate who is he IS—it’s a hint of secrecy.  Some texts say that illegible portions of a signature can indicate self-effacement or even hostility to toward that specific part of the name.

In other words, he has a very “theatrical” signature. Obama wants to communicate his thoughts but not his identity.

The Capital “I” The personal pronoun “I” is another indicator of the writer’s ego, self-worth and self-image.  We have only one example in the two samples. The printed “I” is slanted to the left. A printed letter standing out from otherwise cursive writing indicates a desire to stand out as well as clear thinking.  If Obama is right-handed, then the left lean would be hard to write…again indicating some reserve or defensiveness. If the “I” is simply reclining, it can mean personal conflict.


There are many more aspects of Obama’s writing that could be examined, but this look should give the reader a sense of what’s going on and what issues seem to come up most often.


Some of the books I used for reference include:

A Dictionary of Graphology—The A-Z of Your Personality (Gloria Hargreaves & Peggy Wilson)

The Analysis of Handwriting: Personality and Character (Diane Simpson, my UK contact)

Handwriting Analysis: The Complete Basic Book (Karen Amend & Mary S. Ruiz)

Handwriting Analysis Self-taught (Joel Engel)

Handwriting Analysis: Putting It to Work for You (Andrea McNichol with Jeffrey A. Nelson)

There is also an analysis I found online which might be of interest and there is more fascinating information in a comment by a handwriting expert.  This piece is at AmericanWantstoKnow.com.

28 Responses

  1. The part about BO’s egocentric signature reminded me of the LEGIBLE signature on the Declaration of Independence.

    He could learn a lesson from any one of those men.

    • Very good point. What image by the way comes to mind when you hear ‘John Hancock?’ Right, a cogent signing, written with the mind as well as the hand.

  2. Nice analysis there. I wouldn’t have the patience to do it myself so I am glad there are those like you.

    One note about signatures where I might disagree with you. I’m a doctor and my signature has gone to shit over the years because I have had to write it so many times (notes, certificates, prescriptions etc. etc. etc.). I don’t think it reflects my personality much – just that I got lazy over the years and ended up with essentially my first initial as my signature.

    Other than that, I think you are spot on.

  3. scrubs57…There are a different ways a signature develops. YES, signatures can “deteriorate” through haste, etc. In fact, I read a specific reference to DOCTORS…and others who must sign so many things that the signature is “destroyed.” This is different from developing one from “practice” into something we like. A mature signature develops naturally, but often this doesn’t happen. However, the key thing in the signature here is the theatricality…Again, I’m no expert, but that struck me and the research I did seemed to point that way…the size. larger than the body of the sample. and the large capitals. It’s the comparison to the main text which is the key thing to look at.

  4. Fascinating GRL! Thanks for sharing a bit more insight. It seems from your description that the Socialists and Soros picked exactly the right front man for their Ponzi scheme.

  5. IA,
    Your analysis is right on the money. It lends further credence to what we have already begun to believe about the “Great Pretender”.

    Grail Guardian,
    Good analogy – Ponzi scheme indeed !! If he should be elected I wonder what will happen to the vast number of vulnerable people who invested their heart and soul in the false promises he has made? When their investments go down the toilet will we have a demoralized citizenry even worse that the last 8 years?

  6. Obama is left handed and many left handed people tend to write more vertically as I do to keep from smearing the ink.

  7. See my update in the post on this subject~ and thanks for the info!

  8. ‘Graphology’ is a different thing than forensic handwriting analysis; the relationship between them is analogous to that between astronomy and astrology, or that between a CAT scan of the brain and feeling the bumps on someone’s skull. Sorry, but I don’t see anything here other than more pseudo-science.

  9. Huh? interesting

  10. captainkickstand…tell that to my teacher who was a registered professional graphologist and expert witness in all sorts of legal cases….
    From Webster’s Dictionary:

    Graphology–the study of handwriting, especially as it is supposed to indicate character, aptitudes, etc.
    Graphology encompasses forensic work….people specialize using different approaches depending on what they want to do…forensic doc examination or more personal work.

    From expert Ruth Myers…


    Forensic Graphology, Scientific Handwriting Analysis, Criminal Profiling

    About Forensic Graphology

    Ruth Myers specialises in the examination and comparison of suspect writing of signatures or handwriting and anonymous letters and will attend court as an expert witness if required for corporate or personal cases.

    Ruth’s clients have included the Crown Prosecution Services, Arbitrational Tribunals, Banks (e.g. Habib), Solicitors (e.g. Eskinazi & Co), Building Societies (Nationwide), Financial Institutions and various well-known corporate companies, such as Electrolux Holdings, National Express, Bulgari, BMI Medical Foundation, Pearl Assurance, Aventis Pharmaceuticals, J.Sainsbury and L.A. Fitness.

    Graphology is and can be used as a forensic science tool. A forensic handwriting analyst will use measuring devices, regardless of the script (whether cursive or print), to compare handwriting in terms of size, width, height and angles. The documents are enlarged using stereomicroscopes and magnification equipment giving a depth of field that is helpful in studying indentations of writing.

    The forensic aspect of graphology skills are enhanced by ESDA (Electrostatic Development of Indented Writing Impressions) which develops indented writing impressions that are not seen with the naked eye, for example evidence of altered records, names and addresses, fingerprints etc.

    Ruth Myers is trained and equipped to carry out a number of techniques used in forensic document examination encountered in investigation and litigation.

  11. Is that the woman you did you course with? If so, I wonder if she isn’t misusing the term ‘graphology,’ which in my understanding is commonly used to describe the pseudoscience of determining personality by handwriting.

    Forensic or scientific handwriting analysis is something different entirely, and is widely used in criminal and civil matters as her website makes clear.

    There’s no reproducible scientific evidence that handwriting reveals personality traits with any kind of consistency.

  12. A well thought out and presented examination. The capitals in his signature betray his ego. Yes. But I think the illegible letters aren’t a sign of secrecy. They are a sign that beyond his immense ego and a teleprompter, he is little more than mumbo jumbo.

  13. captainkickstand..NO, that isn’t the woman I studied with…

    Now, if you spent more time examining Obama’s record and associations, you might be very good at seeing what’s going on with him…you seem to like to argue everything here…go argue at Obama HQ.

    Frankly, we’re bored with you…I’m thinking of disinviting you to this site….

  14. You guys are psycho!!!

  15. You mean like his association with Rashid Khalidid, who even Christopher Hitchens, a notorious supporter of the Iraq war and hater of Islamic fundamentalism says is a person of good character?


    Hitchens is hardly a liberal mouthpiece.

    By all means, if you feel it’s necessary, block me from commenting. I would remind you of your earlier statement that you welcome all viewpoints. If all you’re interested in is an echo chamber for your ideas, no matter how far-fetched they might be, kicking me off might be a good idea. I thought you were interested in a sincere intellectual exchange.

    Before I’m blocked: PaganPower, you never answered my question. By your handle, I assume you’re an adherent to an alternative religious tradition, possibly Wicca? Has it occurred to you that historically, when people like ‘Mary’ and ‘Boowitch’ gain power in a society, the first thing they like to do is purge those who aren’t suitably in dread of the anti-Christ? How do you think they would treat you if they were in charge?

  16. Do you mean the former PLO spokesman and the co-founder of the Arab American Action Network, which calls the establishment of Israel a “catastrophe”? That Rashid Khalidi?

    I can’t speak for Pagan Power, but I feel comfortable saying that no one wants Mary or Boowitch to be in charge, any more than we want Obama or captainkickstand or Grail Guardian to be in charge. Let’s leave that to the people that are qualified.

    As far as your attack on GRL, I must point out that you are the one that has been posting here in nearly every single article calling everything far-fetched or crazy. If you’re not interested in alternative ideas, why come here at all? You’re in her house, have a few manners! I thought we had discovered that you could disagree with an idea without calling it loony. No one here expects to “convert” you to anything, however your candidate wants to convert you and everyone else in this country to his own special Socialism/Marxism/Communism hybrid that we like to call fascism.

    GRL doesn’t want to ban you, she wants you to keep the discussion civil and stop attacking everyone that doesn’t think about things the same way you do! If you want to read “an echo chamber for your ideas” maybe you should visit other sites. Seems to me like you’re pulling an Obama: accusing someone else of doing exactly what you do yourself. Best defense is a good offense?

  17. Well, said Grail! It’s like we have to be “diverted” by captainkickstand at every turn! That’s the Obama trick, isn’t it? Diversion….

    So, everyone, do we still want to entertain captainkickstand’s sniping? We try to inform, but information is never enough for these people….It’s just getting to be too much of a waste of time to deal with someone who simply want to be argumentative…

  18. The truly sad thing is GRL that it’s obvious the captain has some smarts, he just chooses to apply them in a non-productive way. If you read our discussion on the NAC thread, you’ll sort of wonder if it’s the same guy.

  19. I don’t see where the captain was attacking insight at all! Good grief, you are being a bit defensive, aren’t you? Asking him to leave just because he questions your analysis? Typical of all you Obama haters…just can’t point anything out to you if it goes against that hatred.

    asking questions and pointing out differences is not ‘sniping’ – sometimes reading these blogs makes one a little crazy with just wanting to disagree, especially when everything you read is filled with so much hatred against Obama plus lies.

  20. Sharon,

    Stop the hate and go vote.

  21. I’m late to this thread, but what I take away from it is that Barack Obama may well have a roaring case of schizophrenia.

  22. I think it shows he’s a square and a poser.

  23. My friend, Gloria Hargreaves, has read your report on Barack Obama’s handwriting analysis and would be interested to receive a copy by email to me please.
    She has written a poem about Barack Obama, would you like to see this?

  24. The straight vertical line on the y means: “LONER” an can, in this case, not be analysed on sexual matters.

    A “t” in triangle form is interpreted as “stubborn person”.

    A lasso inside the left side of an “o” means “lyer”.

  25. […] Obama–A Look at the Personality Behind the Handwriting […]

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