John Hancock’s Signature

Sunday, November 26, 2017

If you were given a pen and asked to put your John Hancock on a piece of paper, would you know what to do? If English isn’t your mother tongue, this could be a very perplexing request, but in the USA it’s quite normal. 

Who is John Hancock and what is a John Hancock?

First, a John Hancock is an informal reference to your signature. If I wanted your autograph, for example, or if I wanted you to sign a contract, I could ask for your John Hancock as an informal way to request your signature. 

John Hancock, the man, was a leader in the American Revolution and a politician. He was the first person to sign our Declaration of Independence in 1776, which stated that the 13 American colonies (our first states) were free from British authority.  

His signature is historically famous. Due to its boldness, large size and stylish script, John Hancock’s name is the most prominent because, according to legend, he wanted the king to be able to read it without his glasses. 

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