Royal African Company

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The Royal African Company, also known as The Company of Royal Adventurers trading to Africa was a trading company charted by the English government in 1672 to conduct its merchants' trade on the Atlantic coast of Africa.[1]


During the first half of the seventeenth century, the Dutch had obtained a monopoly of the trade in slaves to the Spanish and Portuguese colonies in America. To break this monopoly the African Company was formed in 1660, headed by the Duke of York. During the next two years the Dutch vigorously opposed the English Company, soon convincing its officers that it must be organized on a larger scale if it would succeed. In 1663 the Company of Royal Adventurers trading to Africa was organized, being granted the coast from Sallee to the Cape of Good Hope. Vessels sent to the African coast encountered such opposition that in 1664 a squadron was sent to protect them and succeeded in capturing several Dutch forts, but Admiral DeRuyter soon recaptured them.[2]


  1. The Earth and Its Peoples A Global History, Bulliet et al, 2005.
  2. The Colonization of North America, 1492-1783

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