This 1695 act of Parliament was one of the few early statutes which touched upon the slave trade, although its references are quite vague. It begins "Whereas the trade to Africa is highly beneficial and advantageous to this kingdom, and to the plantations and colonies thereunto belonging." It orders a 10% duty in order to finance forts along the African coast, and in several places, it mentions "all goods and merchandize (negroes excepted)." On the last page, it orders that no judges or governors after 1698 shall engage in "the sale or disposal of any negroes," the only direct acknowledgment in this act that any such trade took place at all. This seems to be the first appearance of this act at auction.
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