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Analyze Your Handwriting

Updated on January 15, 2015

What Does Your Handwriting Say About You?

Human beings are curious creatures and somewhat narcissistic by nature. We love to know details about ourselves, most of us like to have our fortunes told, read our daily astrological profile and enjoy cracking open fortune cookies to reveal what lies within.Handwriting analysis is another fun way to figure out what makes you tick and to determine your major personality traits

Graphology is the formal name for handwriting analysis. It refers to the study and analysis of handwriting as it relates to human psychology and behavior. It has been employed for a wide variety of purposes from determining relationship compatibility to forensics and medicine.

In this article, I will discuss the basics of handwriting analysis and provide some resources for learning how to analyze anyone's handwriting yourself using a few simple tools.

There is a Method to the Madness

You look at a sample of your own handwriting and wonder, how can I tell anything about myself from this? Well, there are some basic ways to interpret the various styles, slants, loops, sizes and spacing that reveals truths about our personality and character. I think of it like a projective psychological test. From a psychological perspective, I can tell a lot about a person from a drawing, a sandbox configuration, and even their handwriting. This is because we project ourselves in everything we do. Your handwriting is just an extension of your brain, and if you know what to look for, you can get a pretty good idea about how a person ticks from how and what they write. According to handwriting analyst Gary Thomas, in addition to creating a complete personality profile from a handwriting sample, you can learn a slew of other things about a person, such as health issues, morality, past experiences, hidden talents, and mental problems.

The First Thing to Look For

Take a Look at the "Big Picture"

The first thing to look for when analyzing someones handwriting is the big picture. Look at the entire piece first before breaking it down. When you look at the big picture, notice the things that stick out to you. Does the person dot the letter "I" with a circle? Do they start sentences in lowercase? Does their writing slant to the left? What are the things that stand out?

Pictured is a letter written in England in 1894, showing a handwriting style of the period.

The Second Thing to Look For

Indicators of Emotional and Physical Energy

The second thing to look for is evidence of their emotional energy, which is a combination of physical and mental energy levels. This is revealed by the amount of pressure that is used when writing. Writers with heavy pressure are usually highly successful. They have a lot of vitality and their emotional experiences last for a long time. Writers who write with average pressure are usually moderately successful and usually have enough energy to make it through the day. Those with light pressure try to avoid energy draining situations.


Thomas, G. (2008). Your handwriting: What does it tell about you? Retrieved from:

The Third Thing to Look For

Indicators of Emotional Control and Reliability

The third step in handwriting analysis is to determine the baseline of the writing. The baseline is the real or imaginary line where the small letters rest. This is an indicator of the emotional control and reliability of the writer.

The baseline can be straight, wavy, erratic or sloped. A normal baseline should be slightly wavy. A person with a straight baseline is tense and over disciplined. A very wavy baseline signals a person who is on an emotional roller coaster.

An ascending baseline means optimism. A descending baseline means pessimism, tiredness or depression. A level baseline indicates a healthy balance between optimism and pessimism.

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein

Handwriting Sample of Albert Einstein

Handwriting Sample of Albert Einstein
Handwriting Sample of Albert Einstein

The Fourth Thing to Look For

The Writer's Ability to Concentrate

The fourth thing to look for is the size of the writing. Handwriting size is an indicator of an individual's ability to concentrate. For example, small writing indicates a person who is able to concentrate on the minor details of a task for long periods of time, such as bookkeepers, scientists, and researchers. People who write small like to work alone and are usually conservative and thrifty.

On the other hand, large writers are easily distracted. They have trouble concentrating and easily get "off-track." At work, these individuals should be given varying duties and assignments that are quick to complete.

Most people write in an average size, neither large nor small. This would suggest that most people have an average ability to concentrate, and have to make a concerted effort to concentrate on minor details, especially over extended periods of time.

Pictured is a handwriting sample from Albert Einstein. Though it is written extremely small, each letter is perfectly formed and according to handwriting analyst Gary Thomas, "is a beautiful piece of art".

What can we Tell from Tot Mom's Handwriting?

What can we Tell from Tot Mom's Handwriting?
What can we Tell from Tot Mom's Handwriting?

What Does the Slant of Writing Mean?

Indicators of Emotional Response to External Forces

The slant is another basic indicator to look for. The slant indicates the writers emotional response to external forces. A right slant (////) signals one who responds strongly to emotional situations. They are caring, warm and outgoing-- their heart rules their mind. A vertical slant (llll) writer tries to keep their emotions in check-- mind rules their heart. A left slant writer (\\\\) will conceal their emotions and is observed as cold and indifferent.


Thomas, G. (2008). Your handwriting: What does it tell about you? Retrieved from:

President Bill Clinton

Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton

What Can We Tell About Bill Clinton's Handwriting?

What Can We Tell About Bill Clinton's Handwriting?
What Can We Tell About Bill Clinton's Handwriting?

Reading President Bill Clinton

Using some of the basic principles of handwriting analysis, we can learn some personality and behavioral traits that President Clinton possesses.

1. Pressure: President Clinton looks like he uses quite a bit of pressure when he writes. The amount of pressure a person uses to write is an indicator of emotional energy. Writers with heavy pressure are usually highly successful. This handwriting sample from Bill Clinton reveals a person with a high energy level and a propensity for extreme success.

2. Baseline: A normal baseline is slightly wavy, almost straight but not perfectly so. This indicates someone with an even temperament and emotionally stable and grounded.

3. Slant: President Clinton's writing slants slightly to the left. This indicates he is introspective and tends to conceal his emotions.

4. Size: President Clinton's handwriting seems to be on the small to medium size. This would indicate he possesses traits somewhere in between the two - he has the ability to multitask as well as pay attention to details, has a great ability to focus and to follow through on projects.

Other things to consider:

Individual letters

General shape of the stroke

The slant of the writing

What Can You Learn from the Individual letters?

The letter "t" has the largest number of interpretations. For example where the horizontal "bar" of the t is placed on the vertical "stem" indicates where one places their goals, while the height of the t stem indicates the potential to accomplish those goals.

* A low "t" bar indicates goals set lower than what can be accomplished.

* A "t" bar high on the stem indicates goals set high.

* A "t" bar that is above the stem indicates setting goals higher than can be accomplished.

If a small "g" is drawn like a figure 8, it indicates a strong sense of humor.

An indented "notch" in the upper oval loop of a small "h" is the result of an arrhythmic heart beat.

A small "r" with a square shape indicates someone who is good with their hands

A small or capital letter E which is drawn with rounded edges like a reverse "3" is known as a "Greek E" and indicates someone who is well read.

Speedy Lesson on Handwriting Analysis

For best results

handwriting analysts always prefer samples written on unlined paper.

Some Interpretation Guidelines

Here are some examples of handwriting characteristics and their interpretations according to experts Ruth Gardner and Karen Armend.

Slanting letters

* A forward slant indicates an emotional enthusiasm

* Straight up and down indicates a logical nature

* A left slant indicates introspection.

Angle of Lines on Unlined Paper

* An upward slant indicates optimism and higher energy.

* A downward slant or lines with trail off the page

indicate depression or physical exhaustion.

General shape of the stroke

* Circular handwriting indicates a highly emotional


* Angular handwriting with sharp points indicates

aggressiveness, directness, and high energy

* Square handwriting indicates a real world, practical based approach

* Squiggles and irregular strokes indicate an artistic and non standard approach


Gardner, Ruth (2002), Instant Handwriting Analysis: A Key to Personal Success (1st ed.), Llewellyn Publications

Amend, Karen (1980), Handwriting Analysis (1st ed.), Newcastle Publishing Company

What Can We Tell About Charles Manson from his Handwriting?

This is a sample of Charles Manson's handwriting. Notice that baseline is very wavy, indicating a person whose emotions are unstable and out of control.
This is a sample of Charles Manson's handwriting. Notice that baseline is very wavy, indicating a person whose emotions are unstable and out of control.

Charles Manson, Unstable Freak, ya think?

Charles Manson, Unstable Freak, ya think?
Charles Manson, Unstable Freak, ya think?

Barack Obama's Signature

Barack Obama's Signature
Barack Obama's Signature

George W. Bush's Signature

George W. Bush's Signature
George W. Bush's Signature

Reader Feedback

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      great lens, I love learning new things!

    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 

      7 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      Fun to learn about this subject. I've always wanted to have my handwriting analyzed but I haven't gotten it done professionally yet.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Excellent lens and well presented. Learned a lot.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      What a great lens! I thought about becoming a handwriting expert when I worked in an office that processed forged welfare checks. My boss explained some things about signatures, but you have really nailed it here! Worried about my left slant--my left-handed brother taught me script. Does that count?

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Are those books offered, provided with the practical samples of analysis?

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      cool video!thnx.........

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Hi, does this apply for thus, whom English is not there first language, like my self?

    • PTurner56 profile image


      8 years ago

      Good lens. You covered the basics well and I really like the examples of the famous people you chose.

    • franstan lm profile image

      franstan lm 

      8 years ago

      Very informative lens. Based on the analysis of my handwriting, you hit the nail right on the head with this one. Blessed by a Squid Angel

    • knit1tat2 profile image


      8 years ago

      this topic has always fascinated me! Thanks, and would be fun to see what the experts say about the famous samples you here!

    • cdevries profile image


      8 years ago

      Interesting! The rightward up-sloping lines does seem to go with optimism.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I like this lens I am a right slant so you seem to be bang on. Good work

    • SummersSorbet profile image


      9 years ago

      Great lens, very informative!

    • BarbRad profile image

      Barbara Radisavljevic 

      10 years ago from Templeton, CA

      Although you've repeated some of what was on your other handwriting lens, there is enough unique about this lens to grab a different kind of reader.


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