hi, everybody. i'm troubled with the four subject words. now could someone kindly tell which one fits in the following circumstance best.

two parties signed a contract and disputes arose in performance thereof. one party sued the other party who however alleged that the conract in question was invalid because the seal affixed thereon was fake(not theirs used in business). here comes my query, in order to find out whether the seal was really fake or not, we shall entrust some institution to identify/verify/survey the seal.

so 1)which one should be used here and 2)what circumstances the others may fit.

this seems to be a big question, but hopefully someone can help.

tks a lot
Hi Vincent,

First of all, I'd use "forged", not "fake".

How about "determine (or establish) the authenticity of the seal"?

Others may have a different opinion.
"to authenticate the seal" may fit.

When you identify smth., it means that you recognize it as being specific, or same. I think in the legal context it can be used in a phrase like "the police identified the criminal". It can also mean "establishing smth." - "identify and avoid potential bottlenecks", "find out" - identify the cases of unauthorized access.

Verifying is establishing validity of smth., confirming. An expert can verify the authenticity of smth, so you can also say that the authenticity or identity of the seal will be verified, as an alternative to "authenticate"

Survey is an examination, but I suppose it's used in a bit different context - you can survey the evidence for instance, to verify that it is valid. I'm not sure about whether a seal can be surveyed... I'd rather say that it's "examined".

Hope it helps.