I have a totally different story about the “Harem” put together after many years of research.
Friday, 14 February 2020, 7:51
For nearly four centuries, the Ottoman sultans dwelt amid the secret splendors of Topkapi Palace. Access to the Grand Seraglio–which served as the empire’s administrative, legislative, and judicial center and an academy of fine arts, as well as the ruler’s home–was jealously guarded, even after the sultans ceased to reside there in the mid-nineteenth century. In 1936, a distinguished scholar of Orientalism, Norman Mosley Penzer (1892-1960), was afforded a rare opportunity to step inside the Grand Seraglio; in this eagerly embraced and much-consulted volume, he reveals what he found.
Constructed between 1459 and 1465 at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, Topkapi Palace stands in present-day Istanbul, near the confluence of the Bosphorus, the Golden Horn, and the Marmara Sea. Penzer surveyed the entire palace from end to end during numerous visits over the course of two years, and he presents photographs and floor plans that provide a comprehensive view of Topkapi’s structure. Penzer’s illustrations of the opulent gardens, chambers, and pavilions come to imaginative life with his explorations of day-to-day palace life–particularly among the women of the harem and their eunuch guards. His evocative accounts of the manners, dress, and politics of Turkish court life continue to influence the scholarly work of the twenty-first century, and this classic history remains indispensable to studies of harem life.
I have this book and a few other sources so, I know a little bit about the Mainstream History of the Grand Seraglio.
You have a Sultan who sends his Pashas and pirates out to kidnap loads of young, beautiful women and bring them back to the Harem for the exclusive use of just one man.
These women are imprisoned in a life of luxury, all hoping to be the chosen one. The one who will eventually become #1 wife and Sultana – as powerful as the Sultan.
All the females are unwilling captives. All are described as beautiful, young, Caucasian or European.
None of them are allowed out of their luxurious prison without permission and they are guarded night and day by eunuchs.
But – things often go awry. Jealousy sets in when someone is favoured over all others, so, being females of the species, the rest begin to work their wiles on the eunuchs in the hope of satisfaction.
Sometimes (amazingly) these castrated men are able to father a child with an inmate (?) Blah. Blah.
I know I failed my biology exam but a castrated man fathering a child sounds a bit like going fishing without any tackle!!
…We look at all the above in a different way?
At certain times in history, the Ottoman Empire found itself fighting for survival against the Holy Roman Empire and the Voivodes of Russia and Eastern Europe (!?)
Their most valued warriors/commanders/officers/elites (whatever label you want to use) – knowing that they would have to leave their homes and their families, and that they may never, ever return, took advantage of the Sultan’s protection.
All the wives of said officers, and their children, were transported to Constantinople for their own safety. They were not “sex-slaves” – just women and children living every day in hope that the husband/father/brother/son would return alive.
Even today, it is common for fighting men to be granted R&R. A few days of release when they can return home. Did this happen then too?
The men sometimes got to go to the Seraglio and a reunion with their loved ones. And nature takes it course and .dot .dot.dot
New children are born to the women inside the walls of the palace.
And maybe the Sultan was not a sex-pest but just like everyone else. He had one wife, who he’d maybe been contracted to marry since birth. And the only time he had to go looking for a new wife was if –
a) The relationship turned into a living nightmare.
b) The wife was unable to bear children.
c) Death do them part.
But the Star-Tarians took over and silenced me with banns and insults and vile rumours etc. Old Story.
A gateway has opened for the DM&DF to come together but what does a girl do when her counterpart prefers the company of whores and concubines aplenty in Garage Harem?
She says – YOU DON’T OWN ME, Pimp… and just does her own thing :o)
Much love and best wishes, mate not mate xxx