slave trade


: trafficking of enslaved people
especially, in U.S. history : the business or practice of capturing, transporting, selling, and buying enslaved African people for profit prior to the American Civil War

Examples of slave trade in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The island has a turbulent past—its indigenous population was colonized by the Spanish and then the Dutch—and its archives contain artefacts ranging from sunny vintage postcards to books about the nation’s role in the slave trade and Venuzuela’s oil boom. Kate Knibbs, WIRED, 8 Apr. 2024 Often, Williams collects the earth from historically important sites of loss in the African diaspora: plantations of the American South, street corners where Black trans women were murdered or the banks of a river that became a thoroughfare for the domestic slave trade. Zachary Small, New York Times, 22 Mar. 2024 The Clotilda docked in Mobile, Alabama, in July 1860, five decades after the abolition of the American slave trade. Barbara Spindel, The Christian Science Monitor, 7 Mar. 2024 The slave trade also provided a lot of information that appeared all the way up until the 18th century. Lisa Deaderick, San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Feb. 2024 Britain was a prominent enslaver and many aristocratic families made their fortunes in the slave trade and the industries that used slaves. Simon Perry, Peoplemag, 30 Oct. 2023 In the past two decades, prominent universities including Harvard, Yale, Brown and the University of Virginia have issued extensive mea culpas describing their historical involvement with the slave trade and slave owners. Brandi Kellam, ProPublica, 14 Mar. 2024 In Sevilla, Spain, a host told me not to speak about Christopher Columbus’ contribution to the slave trade. Ronny Maye, Essence, 24 Jan. 2024 And Sherbro Island used to historically be the point of no return in the slave trade. Jasmine Browley, Essence, 15 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'slave trade.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1701, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of slave trade was in 1701

Dictionary Entries Near slave trade

Cite this Entry

“Slave trade.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

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