The Slave Trade 02
The Underground Railroad helped runaway slaves to escape. The photo shows 'A Ride for Liberty - The Fugitive Slaves' by Eastman Johnson.

The Slave Trade 02

Test your knowledge of the slave trade in this KS3 History quiz. Did you know that in the Roman Empire about one fifth of the empire's population and a third of the population of Italy was enslaved? Slaves carried out many domestic, manual and administrative jobs. Britain increased its involvement in the slave trade during the eighteenth century. The Treaty of Utrecht gave British sailors the right to sell slaves within the Spanish Empire.

Some slaves were captured by the British sailors. They would land raiding parties who would then ambush passing locals or raid villages. They chained the people together and marched them to the coast where they were then loaded onto their ship. The majority of slave ships obtained their slaves from slave factors. These were British people who lived full-time in Africa. They bought their slaves from local tribes who had raided nearby villages and captured their enemies to sell into slavery.

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Slave ships usually carried many more slaves than they had room for, so conditions on board were very poor. Slaves often died on the voyage from disease or were thrown overboard during the voyage, so that the captain could make an insurance claim. The most famous of these was the Zong. The captain threw 133 slaves overboard. By the end of the 1700s, there was an increasing opposition to the slave trade.

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  1. Slaves who came to Britain usually worked as what?
    They were cheaper than employing European servants
  2. Runaway slaves in the West Indies had what name?
    They formed their own communities
  3. In 1729 a slave was legally said to be .......
    Very few people at the time considered that it was unjust to consider a person to be 'property'
  4. Which statement about slave ships is false?
    The slave ship owners made huge profits as they packed as many slaves into as small a space as possible
  5. What type of songs were a response to the slave trade?
    Sometimes called 'sorrow songs'
  6. What often happened to whole families sold as slaves?
    Only in rare cases was the family ever reunited
  7. Which American organisation helped runaway slaves to escape?
    It took them to the northern states or Canada where there was little or no slavery
  8. 130 slaves were thrown overboard from which ship in 1782?
    They made a navigational error and were running out of water. The insurance allowed a ship owner to make a claim if part of the cargo was thrown overboard to save the rest. The cargo was slaves
  9. Who was the captain of the Zong?
    He was inexperienced as a captain
  10. Who was heavily involved in the Zong court case?
    Despite his best efforts, no member of the Zong's crew were ever tried for murder

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