Bryan Edwards was a Jamaican planter and politician who published a well–respected History of the West Indies in 1793. He articulated the planter view concerning the value of the West Indian colonies to Great Britain, and opposed the abolition of the slave trade. Edwards disputed European scientific speculation that the ‘New World’ environment retarded nature, although his scientific interests have largely gone unnoticed. Elected a Fellow of The Royal Society in 1794, he became a Member of Parliament in 1796, and wrote a History of Haiti in the following year. As Secretary of the African Association, Edwards edited the African travel journals of Mungo Park.