In many Turkish harems it was the Sultan's mother
who chose the Sultan's women. Often the sultan had little say in who was
brought into his harem and who would be his bed companions, often leading
liaisons and in-fighting behind backs.
Although Sapphira was in an Arabian
harem, and her master was a sheik, this Turkish tradition was practiced,
although to a lesser extent, and after the sheik's mother died her
responsibilities were assumed by the senior slave girl Yasmeen.
told me about life with Ali when he was younger. Under her tutorship, he
acquired a fine appreciation and healthy appetite for the pleasures a woman
can bring to a man's bed, and on each birthday his mother presented him with
a new slave girl. This birthday tradition ended with the death of his mother
when he was twenty years old and his harem held seven beautiful women.
years later his father died, and Sheik Ali inherited his fortune, the palace,
lands, household, and of course, his father’s extensive harem.
Ali sold off the women to eager buyers except for three younger girls whom
he selected to keep for himself, swelling his harem to ten exceptionally
beautiful nubile females all well versed in the arts of pleasing a man.
Here is a list of his slave girls (Hortensia, zahra, noszahra,
and Topaz were acquired after his mother's death) and a short synopsis of
where they came from:
His 14th birthday present. First slave of the harem. Visayan—known today
as the Philippine Islands—and Chinese parentage. Pirate booty, first
sold into a harem in Baghdad and later bought by the Master’s mother.
His 15th birthday present. Nubian, kohl black with gorgeous full breasts and
buttocks. Captured by a raiding party from Upper Egypt. A Christian.
His 16th birthday present. From Aden—now known as The Yemen. Sold into
slavery as punishment for an offense committed while a free girl in the service
of the Sultana of Sana’a. Named after a flowering plant of the region.
BRIAR ROSE His 17th birthday present. Asian from Zamboanga—a town in the
Philippines. Indentured as a household servant by her unsuspecting parents.
Catholic Christian. ay present. Asian from Zamboanga—a town in the Philippines.
Indentured as a household servant by her unsuspecting parents. Catholic Christian.
His 18th birthday present. Deceased.
His 19th birthday present. English. Ran away to sea. Later sold by the captain
to an Arab slave trader in Dublin Ireland. Named after a flower that grows
wild in the Atlas Mountains.
His 20th birthday present. Fair hair and blue eyes. Name means “moist
with dew”. Abducted from Northern Europe—Sweden. A Christian.
ZAHRAH and NOSZAHRAH
Sisters from Iberia (Spain or Portugal). Zahrah, from the word Zahra, means
blooming flower. Almost identical in appearance. Christians.
Christian from Southern Ethiopia. Kohl black/brown. Named after a local flower.
Syrian. Sold into slavery by her uncle. Won by Sheik Ali as part of a wager.
Named after the horse that won the race.