Thomas clarksons essay on the slave trade

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Thomas clarksons essay on the slave trade

John Clarkson —an Anglican priest.

Thomas clarksons essay on the slave trade

He did his undergraduate work at St John's College, Cambridgebeginning in He received his BA degree in and was set to continue at Cambridge to follow in his father's footsteps and enter the Anglican Church.

He was ordained a deacon but never proceeded to priest's orders. Revelation of the horrors of slavery[ edit ] It was at Cambridge in that Clarkson entered a Latin essay competition that was to set him on the course for most of the remainder of his life. The topic of the essay, set by university vice-chancellor Peter Peckardwas Anne liceat invitos in servitutem dare "Is it lawful to enslave the unconsenting?

He read everything he could on the subject, including the works of Anthony Benezeta Quaker abolitionist, as well as first hand accounts of the African slave trade such as Francis Moore's Travels into the Interior Parts of Africa.

Appalled and challenged by what he discovered, Clarkson changed his life. He also researched the topic by meeting and interviewing those who had personal experience of the slave trade and of slavery. After winning the prize, Clarkson had what he called a spiritual revelation from God as he travelled by horseback between Cambridge and London.

He broke up his journey at Wadesmillnear WareHertfordshire. As it is usual to read these essays publicly in the senate-house soon after the prize is adjudged, I was called to Cambridge for this purpose. I went and performed my office. On returning however to London, the subject of it almost wholly engrossed my thoughts.

I became at times very seriously affected while upon the road. I stopped my horse occasionally, and dismounted and walked.

I frequently tried to persuade myself in these intervals that the contents of my essay could not be true. The more, however, I reflected upon them, or rather upon the authorities on which they were founded, the more I gave them credit. Coming in sight of Wades Mill, in Hertfordshire, I sat down disconsolate on the turf by the roadside and held my horse.

Here a thought came into my mind, that if the contents of the essay were true, it was time some person should see these calamities to their end. Agitated in this manner, I reached home. This was in the summer of Having translated the essay into English so that it could gain a wider audience, Clarkson published it in pamphlet-form in as An essay on the slavery and commerce of the human species, particularly the African, translated from a Latin Dissertation.

It was honoured with the first prize in the University of Cambridge, for the year The essay was influential, resulting in Clarkson's being introduced to many others who were sympathetic to abolition, some of whom had already published and campaigned against slavery.

These included influential men such as James Ramsay and Granville Sharpmany Quakers, and other nonconformists. The movement had been gathering strength for some years, having been founded by Quakers both in Britain and in the United States, with support from other nonconformists, primarily Methodists and Baptists, on both sides of the Atlantic.

InQuakers, chiefly from the London area, presented Parliament with their signatures on the first petition against the slave trade. Following this step, a small offshoot group formed the Committee for the Abolition of the Slave Tradea small non-denominational group that could lobby more successfully by incorporating Anglicans, who sat in Parliament.


Quakers were barred from Parliament until the early nineteenth century, whereas clergy of the Anglican Church had the right to seats in the House of Lords. The twelve founding members included nine Quakers, and three pioneering Anglicans: Clarkson, Granville Sharpand Philip Sansom.

They were sympathetic to the religious revival that had predominantly nonconformist origins, but which sought wider non-denominational support for a "Great Awakening" amongst believers.“THE HEART AND SOUL OF THE CAMPAIGN FOR ABOLITION”: CLARKSON’S ESSAY ON THE IMPOLICY OF THE AFRICAN SLAVE TRADE, , AN UNPARALLELED ESSAY IN THE ABOLITIONIST STRUGGLE CLARKSON, Thomas.

An Essay on the Impolicy of the African Slave Trade. In Two Parts. London: Printed . In Clarkson published large numbers of his Essay on the Impolicy of the African Slave Trade (). Another example was his "An Essay on the Slave Trade" (), the account of a sailor who had served aboard a slave ship.

Thomas Clarkson - Wikipedia

Clarkson decided to develop the theme in terms of the Atlantic slave trade, although at first he regarded the topic as a purely academic exercise. In order to write the essay he needed to do a bit of research, and the works he read, such as Anthony Benezet’s “Historical Account of Guinea” affected him deeply.

Thomas Clarkson. Thomas Clarkson is a local hero. A red haired man who stood over 6 feet tall, he spent his long adult life working to abolish the Transatlantic Slave Trade and slavery itself.

Thomas Clarkson, An Essay on the Slavery and Commerce of the Human Species, particularly the African, translated from a Latin Dissertation, which was Honoured with the First Prize, in the University of Cambridge, for the .

Nov 18,  · Thomas Clarkson's Essay The Atlantic Slave Trade was the largest Forced migration in world history. Total Pageviews. CLARKSON, THOMAS; "An Essay on the Slavery and Commerce of the Human Species, Particularly the African" Declaration of the Rights of Man - ;.

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