This seal was used exclusively by the Chongzhen Emperor—Zhu Youjian, the last emperor of the Ming dynasty. The characters on the bottom of the seal are the two characters of the emperor's given name Youjian; they were carved in relief so that the characters could stamp vermillion ink. One impression of this seal has been found on a document personally written by the emperor. In this way, the emperor's handwriting and seal may be authenticated. The knob is a delicately carved dragon that reflects an air of fervent strength. The bottom, or the stamping surface, is carved with a smooth finish. Most of the imperial seals of the Ming dynasty have been lost, so the preservation of this piece makes it of inestimable value.
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