Published in 1804 and again in 1807, prior to two major parliamentary debates on the slave trade, this pamphlet offers a final summary of the arguments in favour of abolition. The author takes a pan-European view of the problem of the slave trade, using French and Spanish sources and suggesting that the British abolition would set an example to the rest of Europe. He examines conditions in the colonies, and compares the cruelty of the planters and frequency of slave revolts in French, Dutch and British plantations. He also argues that the revolution in Saint Domingue was caused not only by cruel treatment of the slaves there but by the expansion of the transatlantic slave trade, and suggests that for Britain to continue to bring slaves from Africa to the West Indies would be "worse than insanity" (77), given the recent war and independence of the former French colony.
Published anonymously, but attributed to Henry Brougham, a well-known British reformer and abolitionist in the nineteenth century.
Three editions of this popular pamphlet were published in 1804, and a fourth edition in 1807.