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orange
07-03-2010, 06:53 PM
Draft of Declaration of Independence named subjects, not citizens

Rob Beschizza at 10:30 AM Saturday, Jul 3, 2010

http://boingboing.net/images/subjects/1.jpg


Hyperspectral images of a draft of the Declaration of Independence reveal that it originally used the word 'subjects' instead of 'citizens' at a critical juncture. After writing "our fellow subjects," author Thomas Jefferson scrubbed it out and replaced it with the familiar alternative.

To the Library of Congress, whose Preservation Research and Testing Division analyzed the document with the latest high-resolution camera equipment, it illustrates an important moment: "when [Jefferson] reconsidered his choice of words and articulated the recognition that the people of the fledgling United States of America were no longer subjects of any nation, but citizens of an emerging democracy."

http://boingboing.net/images/subjects/2.jpg

The sensitivites surrounding the revelation are obvious, as is its humor. Perhaps Jefferson simply forgot, in his haste to draft the document that would shape his nation's future. Or maybe we're seeing a decisive instant, a decision about that future's very nature being made in ink.

The Library of Congress often discovers unusual things while examining ancient artifacts. Especially maps and documents, where modern tech sees what the naked eye can't: corrections, changes, and severely faded or damaged elements.

http://boingboing.net/images/subjects/3.jpg

The correction is in the part of the declaration concerning grievances against King George III.

"It had been a spine-tingling moment when I was processing data late at night and realized there was a word underneath citizens," said scientist Fenella France, who revealed the correction at the LoC's labs, in a press release. "Then I began the tough process of extracting the differences between spectrally similar materials to elucidate the lost text."

According to the Library, the correction was suspected in the past--similar language exists in state constitutions--but not demonstrable until now.

http://boingboing.net/images/subjects/4.jpg

Photos: Library of Congress.

http://www.boingboing.net/2010/07/03/declaration-of-indep.html

patteeu
07-03-2010, 08:05 PM
Interesting.

Unrelated Independence Day item: I'm at a fireworks display tonight and I just saw a young girl walk by wearing a union jack shirt. I wonder if it's an intentional blaspheme or something she thought was patriotic because it's red, white, and blue.

kcfanXIII
07-04-2010, 12:13 AM
Interesting.

Unrelated Independence Day item: I'm at a fireworks display tonight and I just saw a young girl walk by wearing a union jack shirt. I wonder if it's an intentional blaspheme or something she thought was patriotic because it's red, white, and blue.

my guess is number two. damn kids don't know anything, except how to ruin a lawn.

and nice find orange.

BillSelfsTrophycase
07-04-2010, 01:14 AM
Wow, an 18th century typo

Huge find

Baby Lee
07-04-2010, 06:42 AM
Wow, an 18th century typo

Huge find

Writo? Calligrapho?