(Also "Japanese signature seals," "chops," "hanko
Private or official seals or stamps engraved with the name of the office,
institution or individual to which it belongs. In contrast to rubber stamps,
are made of stone, wood or horn.
Formally introduced to Japan in 701 from China, hanko
wooden, stone or horn blocks used as signatures to bind any and every
legal contract in Japan. "Jitsuin
," or "true seals" are registered
with the local authorities and used on important legal documents. Japanese
also carry personal hankos for everyday use.
Click here to see insho
by the master craftsman, Kitaji-san