Tag Archives: Cape Town City Walks

Slave Sex Scandal

Sex is an awesomely powerful force about which we prefer not to talk. However its force is blatantly obvious. Just look at how many people there are on the planet!

We are pretty accustomed to the historical stories of free white m

embers of society taking sexual advantage of enslaved women. What doesn’t get much airtime are the historical interracial romances which involved willing partners – and there are many of these.

The juiciest bit of scandal that we have so far discovered involved Hester Jansz. She was a Dutch woman married to Gerrit van Ewijck and living on Mauritius , which was a Dutch outpost even before the Cape was settled by the Dutch. Perhaps Gerrit just didn’t do it for her! Or perhaps it’s true that some white women just prefer black men! But whatever the reason, in 1691 Hester had an adulterous relationship with her slave. Imagine the scandal in the outposts in that time when this relationship was uncovered.

We don’t know the name of the slave nor do we know what fate befell him in Mauritius , but Hester van Ewijck was sent to The Cape for judgement and was sentenced to be flogged and to serve five years in chains. The question that must be asked is whether this was a normal sentence for adultery or whether it was more severe because her chosen partner was a slave.


Video introducing the Cape Town City Walks

Meet Jan van Riebeeck and get a taste of our new City Walk.  This 2-hour walk takes place every morning in the centre of Cape Town, and introduces you to the fascinating history behind the Mother City.

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Italian fans

We've been hard at work developing and refining our fantastic new tour called “Sex & Slaves in The City”.

Recently, while Dean Paarman was practising, an Italian journalist asked if she could join us. We were delighted to have an objective person attend. Roberta mentioned that she had other commi

tments but would like to join the tour-practice for a few minutes. Well, she was still with us 2 hours later when Dean completed the tour . . . and she said that it had been a great experience. With that vote of confidence from the Italians we reckon we are just about ready to fly.

Steve Bolnick


The reality of Cape Town slavery

Most of us are aware that there were slaves at The Cape some time in the past. But how much do you know about the reality of slavery?

I am amazed that slavery even existed. The idea of owning another human being is bizarre and reminds us of the baser side of human nature.

Do you know that children could be sold as slaves separately from their mothers? In about 1657 Jan van Riebeeck was given the gift of a slave by the name of Clein Eva. She was 5 years old!

In 1693 Simon van der Stel, a subsequent (and very influential) Dutch representative at The Cape purchased 3 children as slaves and most remarkably sold a 3 year old slave by the name of Revan!

Imagine the trauma suffered by these children and their mothers.

What do you think about this?