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March 2020
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Wednesday March 25, 2020 (3/25/2020)
Method: March 25th on Gregorian calendar
Length: 1 day
Period: 1 year

The Slave Trade Act (citation 47 Geo III Sess. 1 c. 36) was an Act of Parliament of the United Kingdom passed on 25 March 1807, with the long title "An Act for the Abolition of the Slave Trade". The original act is in the Parliamentary Archives. The act abolished the slave trade in the British Empire, but not slavery itself; slavery on English soil was unsupported in English law and that position was confirmed in Somersett's Case in 1772, but it remained legal in most of the British Empire until the Slavery Abolition Act 1833.

The Committee for the Abolition of the Slave Trade formed in 1787 was formed by a group of Evangelical English Protestants allied with Quakers to unite in their shared opposition to slavery and the slave trade. The Quakers had long viewed slavery as immoral, a blight upon humanity. By 1807 the abolitionist groups had a very sizable faction of like-minded members in the British Parliament. At their height they controlled 35–40 seats. Known as the "Saints", the alliance was led by the best known of the anti-slave trade campaigners, William Wilberforce, who had taken on the cause of abolition in 1787 after having read the evidence that Thomas Clarkson had amassed against the trade.[1] These dedicated Parliamentarians had access to the legal draughtsmanship of James Stephen, Wilberforce's brother-in-law. They often saw their personal battle against slavery as a divinely ordained crusade. On Sunday 28 October 1787, Wilberforce wrote in his diary: "God Almighty has set before me two great objects, the suppression of the slave trade and the reformation of manners."[2]

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