For more than seventy years, the Aborigines' Protection Society, a select group of the great and the good, fought for the natives of the British Empire and against the tide of white supremacy to defend the interests of aboriginal peoples everywhere. Active on four continents, the Societybrought the Zulu King Cetshwayo to meet Queen Victoria, and Maori rebels to the Lord Mayor's banqueting hall. The Society's supporters were denounced by senior British Army officers and white settlers as Zulu-lovers, 'so-called friends of the Aborigines', and even traitors.The book tells the story of the three-cornered fight among the Colonial Office, the settlers and the natives that shaped the Empire and the pivotal role that the Society played, persuading the authorities to limit settlers' claims in the name of native interests. Against expectations, the policy ofnative protection turned out to be one of the most important reasons for the growth of Imperial rule. James Heartfield's comparative study of native protection policies in Southern Africa, the Congo, New Zealand, Fiji, Australia, and Canada explains how those who held the best of intentions ended upunwittingly championing further colonisation.Pointing to the wreckage of humanitarian imperialism today, Heartfield sets out to understand its roots in the beliefs and practices of its nineteenth-century equivalents.