According to this article in the Guardian the UK Treasury tweeted this year:
"Did you know that in 1833, Britain used £20 million pounds - which amounted to 40% of the UK GDP to buy freedom for all slaves in the Empire. The amount of money borrowed for the Slavery Abolition Act was so large that it wasn't paid off until 2015. This means that every living British citizen paid for ending the slave trade."
To which one angry British citizen, Lexington Wright, tweeted back:
"So basically my father, and his children and grand-children have been paying taxes to compensate those who enslaved our ancestors and you want me to be proud of this fact? Are you f****** insane???"
The Guardian adds as commentary to this exchange:
Few people in the 1830s would have seen it this way. Compensation was a mechanism of ending a system that millions of people had come to regard as abhorrent and a national disgrace. The abolitionists agonised over it ... the only people who saw a positive in it were the people who spent three decades campaigning for it and would be the beneficiaries of it - the slave owners.
They go on to add:
The slave owners not only recieved compensation from the British Taxpayer they won another concession, the euphemistically named 'apprenticeship' system. What this meant was that slaves were forced to work on the fields for another further six years without pay after the abolition of slavery.
The above is the background to the following questions:
Q. The compensation was paid for emancipating slaves in the Empire. How much of this was paid for the top five slave-owning nations? Who are they, and how many slaves were emancipated?
Q. How much was this worth as a percentage of the top slave-owning nations GDP at that time?
Q. Was any additional monies paid by any of those nations governments as compensation?
Q. How did they come up with the figure of £20 million pounds - was this solely based on the market values of slaves at the time or were other factors taken into consideration?
Q. How would one cost the six years of unpaid work by emancipated slaves and how much did this come to?
There are a number of questions but they are all interlinked and prompted by the initial tweet. I can ask them seperately if people wish.