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Fob seal bearing the emblem of the anti-slavery campaign

 Single Item
JL 997

  • Request

A fob seal (3.6cm x 2.5cm x 1cm) bearing the emblem of the Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade, a kneeling man in chains with the legend 'Am I not a Man and a Brother?'.

The triple sided rotating yellow (glass?) matrix, mounted within a rococo pinchbeck metal swivel housing, can be dated to c.1807. The creator is unknown.


  • Creation: c.1807


1 box

Language of Materials

  • English

Preferred Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. JL 997].

Please see our help page for further guidance on citing archives and manuscripts.


JL 997

Collection ID (for staff)

CMD ID 17256


Fob seal bearing the emblem of the anti-slavery campaign.

Biographical / Historical

The Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade was formed in London in 1787 by a group of twelve men, predominantly Quakers. The Society worked to inform the public about the abuses of the slave trade through publishing books and pamphlets, organising lectures and rallies and presenting petitions to the House of Commons. An emblem featuring a kneeling man in chains and the question 'Am I Not a Man and a Brother?' was produced on Wedgwood pottery medallions and then on other articles and increased awareness of the abolition campaign.

In 1807 the British Parliament voted to abolish the international slave trade and the Society was superseded by the Anti-Slavery Society, founded in 1823 to campaign for the abolition of the institution of slavery throughout the British Empire.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased by the Bodleian Library from Samuel Gedge Ltd in December 2019.

Related Materials

Bodleian Library: Archive of the Anti-Slavery Society, MSS. Brit. Emp. s. 16-25

Catalogue of a Fob Seal bearing the Emblem of the Anti-Slavery Campaign
Finding aid prepared by Lucy McCann
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom