The significance of signatures: Why the framers signed the constitution and what they meant by doing so


In this article, I discuss the signatures on the U.S. Constitution. I begin with a historical account of the Constitution's signing, noting in particular that unlike its ancestors, the Constitution was signed well before it began to assume legal status. I then explore the ways in which the Constitution's signatures served as useful advertisements for the document during ratification. Finally, I demonstrate that the Constitution's signatures (and the clause introducing them) gave rise to considerable interpretive ambiguity during both the Constitutional Convention and the ratification process that followed.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,923

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

  • Only published works are available at libraries.


Added to PP

19 (#822,759)

6 months
1 (#1,511,647)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references