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BICKELL, Richard.

The West Indies as they are;

or A Real Picture of Slavery: but more particularly as it exists in the Island of Jamaica. In three parts. With notes.

Published: London: for J. Hatchard and Son; and Lupton Relfe, 1825

Stock code: 37387

Price: £320

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First Edition of this eyewitness account of the conditions in Jamaica by an Anglican cleric, a key source for the history of this period. By no means a fanatical Abolitionist, Bickell’s testimony is the more valuable for that. He attributed the sufferings of the slaves to the dullness and apathy produced by continuity, if not intensity, of toil – “This constant work, work, work is a principal cause of one of the greatest hardships in West Indian slavery – I mean the constant use of the whip; for, seeing that work is their only portion, they are inclined to be indolent” – and he noticed that, with a very natural perversity, slaves “take care not to put forth all their strength.” Ownership inscription of [The Rev.] M.M. Preston, a contributor to The Society for the Abolition of Slavery, to the title page.

Octavo. Lightly browned, some occasional foxing, else very good in modern half blue cloth on blue paper-covered boards.

Bibliography: Sabin 5218.

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