Granville Sharp (1735–1813) was the son of Thomas Sharp, Archdeacon of Northumberland, and grandson of John Sharp, Archbishop of York. He first became well known through his persistent efforts to secure a judgement from the courts that no man could be a slave in England—efforts which were crowned with success in the Somerset case of 1772. Sharp's attack on slavery attracted the attention of the Philadelphia Quaker, Anthony Benezet (1713–84), one of the pioneer opponents of slavery in the colonies. Benezet and Sharp opened a correspondence about colonial opposition to the slave-trade, especially the Virginia petition to the Crown against it. This correspondence in its turn induced Benjamin Rush (1745–1813), a physician in Philadelphia, to write to Sharp. Thus began the exchange of letters, destined to continue for thirty-six years, which is printed here.