WASHINGTON (AP) - Weeks of intensive conservation treatment on a 714-year-old copy of the English declaration of human rights known as the Magna Carta have revealed that the full text of the 1297 document is still intact, though some words are faded, damaged and illegible.
A $13.5 million gift from philanthropist David Rubenstein is funding the conservation treatment at the National Archives, as well as a major exhibit being planned to showcase the Magna Carta as a forerunner to the U.S. Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights.
The historic document bears the seal of King Edward I and is dated 1297. It is one of 17 known handwritten copies of the text that established a tradition for the rule of law. It is the only original version in North America.
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