John Wesley

Statue of John Wesley

St. Pauls Cathedral Churchyard, London – Tube: St. Pauls (Central Line)

John Wesley, most famous for being credited as one of the founders of the Methodist religion was also a keen supporter of the abolition movement. He initially grew interest in the subject when Granville Sharp contested the runaway case of James Somerset.

Wesley published ‘Thoughts on Slavery’ in 1774, in this he attacked the slave-trade and proposed a boycott on slave-produced goods such as sugar and rum. In 1787 Wesley wrote to the Comittee for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade expressing his support.

Wesley continued to support the abolition movement up until his death in 1791. A famous quote from Wesley reads..

“Give liberty to whom liberty is due, that is, to every child of man, to every partaker of human nature. Let none serve you but by his own act and deed, by his own voluntary action. Away with all whips, all chains, all compulsion. Be gentle toward all men; and see that you invariably do with every one as you would he should do unto you.”

A statue of John Wesley exists today in the churchyard of St. Pauls Cathedral.

Statue of John Wesley situated in the churchyard of St. Pauls Cathedral

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