According to Wikipedia:
The importance (or lack thereof) of these differences has been the source of debate regarding the meaning and interpretation of [2nd] the amendment, particularly regarding the importance of the prefatory clause.
One version was passed by the Congress, and a slightly different version was ratified.
Passed by Congress (emphasis mine):
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
From this I have two questions:
- Which one is the actual/legal text (or is that questionable)?
- How can the differences affect the amendment's interpretation? Although this question is opinion-based, I'm looking more for how the textual differences have been argued in court or by legal scholars.