Advanced search Click here for the website of the current Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby

This is an archived website containing material relating to Dr Rowan Williams’ time as Archbishop of Canterbury, which ended on 31st December 2012

Skip Content

Archbishop dedicates memorial of Olaudah Equiano

Monday 9th February 2009

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu will dedicate the memorial of Olaudah Equiano in St Margaret's Church at Westminster Abbey at 6.30 pm on Monday 9th February 2009.

Olaudah Equiano, the black campaigner prominent in the 18th century abolitionist movement which brought slavery to an end, is to be honoured with a memorial in St Margaret's Church at Westminster Abbey.

Equiano (1745 – 1797), also known by his slave name of Gustavus Vassa, was baptised at St Margaret's on 9 February 1759.

His autobiography, entitled The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African, was first published in 1789 and rapidly went through many editions. It depicted the horrors and degradations of human slavery and helped to influence those involved in British law to abolish the slave trade through the Slave Trade Act of 1807.

The memorial has been created by the London-based sculptor Marcia Bennett-Male who has also been formally trained as an architectural stone carver and letter cutter.

Back · Back to top