"Since Europeans in every region were enslaved in Roman and early medieval times (to say nothing of Asia and Africa, and since Barbary corsairs continued to enslave white Europeans and Americans well into the nineteenth century) it seems highly probable that if we could go back far enough in time, we would discover that all of us reading these words are the descendants of both slaves and masters in some part of the world. It was not until the seventeenth century that even New World slavery began to be overwhelmingly associated with people of black African descent—as opposed to Native Americans."
David Brion Davis, Inhuman Bondage: The Rise and Fall of Slavery in the New World Oxford UP 2006 (54)
Masterful work of one of the most brilliant historians of comparative slavery in the world. Briefly my teacher at Yale University, I am proud to say.