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I have created a node entering content for its body field; when I return to the node edit form, the body field is empty.

What may cause this problem?

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what was the content of the node? was it HTML? if yes, what type of HTML tags were used? because text formats in Drupal can limit the tags automatically and you'll not be able to view the content. Go to admin/config/content/formats for more details – AjitS Jun 27 '12 at 12:39
@indrock: Input format is set to Full HTML – Nima Jun 27 '12 at 12:41
@indrock: Yes!... – Nima Jun 27 '12 at 16:52

If you are using node translations, when Drupal gets an empty body, it first search a translation with non empty body and, if found, shows it. That's probably why you are viewing body content in the node view but an empty textarea in the node edit form, the content surely comes from one translation.

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Wow, so I just ran into this problem too. Apparently in my case the body text language was set to "en" but the node language was set to "language neutral". The user somehow did this with a bunch of nodes. – pthurmond Jan 17 '13 at 15:54

Easy solution. Just go to your database and change the body to "en" language if it says "und". It is in field_revisions_body and field_data_body in drupal 7

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