75

Africa Slavery is an ancient universal institution, which appeared independently in all cultures and societies which reached a certain level of productivity per capita. Early hunter-gatherers did not have it because each tribe member could barely sustain himself, so there was no incentive for slavery, but agriculture provided ample opportunities to exploit ...


32

In short, Brazil and Caribbean Isles were easy to colonize and suited to the culture of the sugar cane. This related question will provide most of the explanation why Africa was harder to colonize, and less welcoming to Europeans. Moreover, it is far easier to control slaves outside of Africa. They can't hide in the local population. Also, sugar became ...


20

Many Native Americans had died of Old World disease, Africans did not When the Europeans showed up in the New World, they brought disease that killed a large portion of the local people (60%? 80%? 90%? ). This meant, from the European standpoint, that in the 1500's and 1600's, New World land was available for the taking. West Africa, on the other hand, had ...


18

Islam dominated slave trade between the 7th and the 15th century, while the Christians entered the market of human flesh much later - 1519 to 1815 is the period of Christian slave trading. It is incorrect to say Christians were not involved in the slave trade before or after this era. He appears to be referring to the Atlantic Slave Trade, and ...


14

French slave trading practices were more abusive than comparable American practices for several reasons. The French sent out more and larger ships than the Anglo Americans. Conditions were much worse with overcrowding, etc. than on smaller ships. The destination for French slaves were Caribbean sugar islands, which were more nearly comparable to similar ...


14

I am going to do something apparently silly, and answer my own question. That's because the question is not originally mine, but by a user named Maria BI. She asked this in Skeptics stackexchange, and people there voted to migrate it here (which seems reasonable; it is a question about History, after all). But then the question was closed here (and so much ...


12

Slavery in Americas didn't appear in United States in the 18th century; it originates much earlier in Spanish and Portuguese colonies. So we should look whether slavery existed in Christian Iberian kingdoms before the discovery of the New World. And it surely did. Slavery distinct from mere serfdom existed in Europe in medieval era without interruptions. ...


11

The cultivation of sugar was more profitable on islands. The plantations in the "Caribbean" were on islands. Until the mid-16th century at least, production from "Brazil," largely came from Santa Catarina Island (or coastal strips on the mainland with the properties discussed below). On the other hand, "West Africa" had relatively few islands except for e.g. ...


10

Afro Carribeans: Afro-Caribbeans are Caribbean people who trace their heritage to Sub-Saharan Africa [...] Between the 16th and 19th centuries, European-led triangular trade brought African people to work as slaves in the Caribbean on various plantations. These Afro Carribeans are descendants of slaves. The slaves had no rights and a master of a slave ...


9

Slavery was common to most ancient societies. On a more specific question about Muslim slave trade in Africa, it lasted from the 7th to the 19th centuries, and some estimates claim 18.5 million victims (counting only dead, not those traded). Of course all numbers of this sort can be only very rough estimates. Source: Matthew White, The great big book of ...


8

NOTE This was an attempt to answer the question as originally written: Someone already asked when and how people began to consider slavery immoral on stack exchange, but no one has asked why. So that is my question; WHY did people in the United States and Europe start to think slavery was immoral after doing it and profiting from it for a long time? The ...


8

It makes sense that colonies belonging to different European nations would preferentially buy from traders of the same nation, since under the prevailing mercantilist legal regimes the latter would automatically (or most easily) have the right to trade with said colonies. (And would know the language, which helps.) And, of course, it also makes sense that ...


7

Yes, that is true. During the Middle Ages the Berbers living in the Sahara developed trade routes through the desert down to the Niger, giving the Islamic world trade access to sub-Saharan gold, copper and ivory, slaves, and Saharan salt. The sub-Saharan termini of these routes prospered along with the routes themselves, developing into progressively ...


7

SHORT ANSWER NO. The two main databases on the trans-Atlantic slave trade do not support the idea that French slave ships had, on average, higher mortality rates than American carriers. In fact, the opposite may well be true, though this can be explained by American slavers being less experienced than others (British and French slave ships also had high ...


5

When you say "slaves freed in the UK", I assume you are referring to slaves in Britain's Caribbean colonies. For Britain's Caribbean colonies, it used to be believed that most freed slaves adopted or were given the surname of their owner. However, more recent research shows that, although this did happen, there were other options available to free men and ...


4

True slavery was still common in Western Europe until early medieval times. Most peasants were serfs and were not at the time considered slaves. However whilst serfdom and slavery have some theoretical and legal differences, the conditions of serfdom fulfill all the criteria of slavery as it is recognised today. It is important to recognise those ...


4

I am writing this answer mainly to provide some sources. As for the claim "1519 to 1815 is the period of Christian slave trading", the first date is glaringly wrong. The Siete Partidas, a Spanish law code from the thirteenth century, gives rules for slavery at Partida 4, Title 22, showing that slavery then existed. (1807 Real Academia de Historia edition ...


4

There are few "references" on the interior traffic on this subject and the few that exist, like that of Fowell Buxton, I consider highly unreliable for various reasons where he writes of matters of which he knew nothing but secondhand stories. First of all, slaves were not moved from the deep interior of Africa. Africa is mostly populated on the coasts, not ...


4

Each of the current answers is excellent, but is only a partial answer. Another piece of the answer that I'm surprised hasn't already been mentioned is the Atlantic triangle slave trade: "Molasses to rum to slaves." While it is certainly true that the Carribean is well-suited for the cultivation of sugar and that it lends itself to slave-based plantations, ...


3

Slavery certainly did not "grow out of feudalism". Slavery is a much older and much more global institution than feudalism. Those who started transporting slaves from Africa to North America did not do anything new. Long before that, slaves were transported from Africa to Spanich and Portuguese colonies in Caribbean and to South America. Slavery in Africa ...


3

There is an easy solution to this. Assume you aim for a certain degree of historical accuracy or at least believability. You let your character get captured in Africa, sold to a British slave trader who intends nothing else but fill a ship full of people to be sold in America. All still conforming to the popular school knowledge of triangle trade, the ...


3

Generally, there are a large number of useful references to the Eastern and Central African slave trade in the contemporary traveler and missionary texts and the Geographical Journal. Many may be accessed via the Internet Archive or the RGS Library in London. Caravan speed can be computed from some of the better accounts [eg. Tipu Tip’s biography by H.Erode,...


3

It is an exaggeration that in 16th century the crossing took months. Columbus's first voyage took 6 weeks (I subtracted the stop on Canary islands). This was not the shortest route, and this was his first voyage ever! Return crossing took 1 month and 2 days. You can check Wikipedia for his other voyages, and for some subsequent 16th century voyages. But it ...


3

Yes, there was slavery in Black Africa. Shockingly, blacks are human... with all human qualities and defects. Who would have imagined? All human societies past say neolithic have slavery. Black Africa has a huge diversity of civilizations, so it had slavery. It's a really obvious pattern. The only reason for people NOT seeing this obvious pattern is if they ...


3

I discovered this answer in the course of asking the question, because I did make a lot of attempts to seek answers as I wrote and reworded each paragraph. I finally remembered to try Wikipedia in other languages. No luck in Spanish and Portuguese, and French didn't exist, but the Dutch version struck gold. The table is long and detailed so I'll just use a ...


2

Slavery did not disappear from Europe. It was common practice in the Muslim states up to the end of the Reconsquista. Portugal practiced slavery too. It was far less common, but they still did it. Portugal and Slavery They never stopped it before the Atlantic Slave Trade they started. The Portuguese outposts in West Africa were almost "on the road" to ...


2

Let's hear it from the most prominent abolitionist of the time, who wrote the declaration of beliefs for the Abolitionist movement in 1830 and was the publisher of one of the oldest abolitionist newspaper The Liberator, William Lloyd Garrison. On July 4, 1854, Garison publicly burned a copy of the Constitution, condemning it as "a Covenant with Death, an ...


2

Question: What was the tonnage carried in the Triangle Trade? I'm interested in metrics regarding trans-atlantic trade in the era of the sail. The specific timespan doesn't matter. The specific cargo also doesn't matter. Since you are asking for metrics, I'm not going to comment much in my answer and just give you the metrics I found. The Middle ...


2

how common was chattel slavery worldwide before the trans-Atlantic slave trade? Trans-Atlantic slave trade never amounted to more than a third of African slave trade. Most of the African slaves were bought by the Muslims in the Middle East, who immediately castrated all males (which is why there are few Africans there these days). Slavery is an ancient ...


1

If it is the early 1760s, you have a good reason. That is, the Seven Years' War between Britain and France, which lasted until 1763. Your slave was captured by a French slave trader bound for the French West Indies. This ship, in turn, was captured by a British warship and taken to Britain as a prize of war, along with its "cargo."


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