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Distinguish From: 

n. ~ 1. The professional discipline of protecting materials by minimizing chemical and physical deterioration and damage to minimize the loss of information and to extend the life of cultural property. - 2. The act of keeping from harm, injury, decay, or destruction, especially through noninvasive treatment. - 3. Law · The obligation to protect records and other materials potentially relevant to litigation and subject to discovery.

- preserve, v. ~ 4. To keep for some period of time; to set aside for future use. - 5. Conservation · To take action to prevent deterioration or loss. - 6. Law · To protect from spoliation.


Preservation2 is sometimes distinguished from conservation1, the latter describing treatments to repair damage. However, preservation activities are often considered a subdiscipline within the profession of conservation2. - Preservation3 is used in many public records laws to distinguish records from nonrecords; records are those materials that warrant preservation, that are set aside (usually by being filed). Materials that are not set aside for subsequent use do not fall within the scope of that legal definition. In this context, preservation is roughly synonymous with filing, with no connotation of permanent preservation.

A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology