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Relief seal (朱印, しゅいん, shuin)

Shuin is a seal carved in relief. It produces朱文 (しゅぶん, shubun, lit. “red text”; i.e. red characters on white background after seal pressing). Shubun is the opposite of 白文 (はくぶん, hakubun, lit. hite text”), which is a seal imprint in intaglio, leaving white (白) text (文) imprint after pressing, on a red background. Hakubun represents the female side of the Universe “Yin” (陰, Chinese: Yīn, i.e. “shadow”), whereas shubun is its male counterpart, known as “Yang” (陽, Chinese: Yáng, i.e. “sun”). Both types of seals (判子, はんこ, hanko) are commonly used in calligraphy.

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Page last modified on November 04, 2011, at 07:45 AM