William Wilberforce

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 Telling the story
 The slave trade

Scandalised by the horrors of the slave trade, he spent 17 years campaigning for it to end. A short life of William Wilberforce.

In 300 years, 15 million slaves were shipped from Africa to the Americas. When did it start, and what was it that drove the trade?

 Who’s who
 Slavery today

Abolishing the British slave trade was the work of many people, including politicians, artists and preachers. Read about the leading activists.

Tragically, slavery continues to this day, in child labour, people trafficking and other forms of oppression.


“Oh, me good friend, Mr Wilberforce, make we free! God Almighty thank ye!” Quotes by and about William Wilberforce.

Explore websites commemorating the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade, plus sites on slavery today.

 Further reading

Want to read further about the life of William Wilberforce, the slave trade and its abolition? Our list of recommended books.

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About this module

Read about the life and work of William Wilberforce, who played a key role in the struggle to abolish the slave trade, 200 years ago. 2007 saw the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the British slave trade, which was achieved through the work of Wilberforce and other abolitionists of the time.

These pages were written by Stephen Tomkins.

Categories: Lives, Biographical,


Module contents

arrow Introduction

arrow Telling the story

arrow The slave trade

arrow Who's who

arrow Slavery today

arrow Quotes

arrow Links

arrow Further reading

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