Designed by some of the nation's most visionary Founders, the two sides of the Great Seal embody the essential guiding principles these farsighted patriots hoped we would always follow.
The actual Great Seal adopted by Congress on June 20, 1782 is a written document that precisely describes the imagery.
For the past 230 years, the U.S. Department of State has been sealing official documents using engraved dies based on this official description. The first die is shown here. (Note: the design is in reverse.) The government also has official illustrations of the Great Seal's two sides.