The Virginia Declaration of Rights was written by George Mason in 1776, and it l

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The Virginia Declaration of Rights was written by George Mason in 1776, and it laid the
foundation for the opening paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights
(the first 10 amendments of the U.S. Constitution). In this essay, you will compare the three
documents and highlight some of the similarities they share. This will demonstrate how the
Virginia Declaration of Rights influenced the later documents, and, by extension, how influential
Virginia was to the founding of the United States.
INSTRUCTIONS
You will compare the Virginia Declaration of Rights with the Declaration of Independence and
the Bill of Rights and write a 1-2-page essay discussing the similarities between them. The
required paper length does not include the title page or bibliography.
You should discuss at least two similarities the Virginia Declaration of Rights shares with the
Declaration of Independence, and at least two similarities to the Virginia Declaration of Rights
shares with the Bill of Rights.
The assigned documents can be found on the National Archives website. Direct links are listed in
the Founding Documents Essay Resources for this assignment. These three documents should
be the only sources consulted for this assignment, as all the analyses present in this essay should
be original to you.
All citations must be in proper Turabian formatting. This includes both footnotes in the body of
the essay (for all paraphrases and direct quotes from the assigned founding documents) and a
bibliography at the end of it. The bibliography does not count toward the paper’s length. See the
Turabian Bibliography Examples and the Chart of Citations for examples of how to cite sources
in Turabian, as well as the template for this assignment. See the Turabian Sample Paper for a
visual of what a paper with footnotes looks like.
Review the Founding Documents Essay Grading Rubric before submitting to be sure the
submission fulfills all the assignment requirements. The paper must be 1-2 pages long, be
submitted in 12 pt font, and be double spaced.
When you write for academic assignments, be sure to follow the best practices for formal
writing. Those include:
Always write the informal language. Avoid colloquialisms and contractions.
Always write in the third person (he, she, it…), never first person (I, we, me…).
Avoid run-on sentences and sentence fragments. Make sure you can identify the subject
and verb in every sentence.
When writing about historical things, stay in the past tense.
Only use apostrophes to make nouns possessive, never plural

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