10 Facts About Abbasid harem


The Abbasid harem acted as a role model for the harems of other Islamic dynasties, as it was during the Abbasid Caliphate that the harem system was fully enforced in the Muslim world.

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Nabia Abbott, preeminent historian of elite women of the Abbasid Caliphate, describes the lives of harem women as follows.

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Satiety within the individual Abbasid harem meant boredom for the one man and neglect for the many women.

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Abbasid harem established a model of hierarchy and organisation which was to become a standard for Muslim harems for centuries.

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Abbasid harem's could become a legal wife of the Caliph, if he manumitted her and chose to marry her.

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Eunuchs were the castrated male slaves responsible for guarding the Abbasid harem, for preventing the women from leaving the Abbasid harem and for approving any visitor before they gained entrance.

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The men meant for the Abbasid harem were all eunuchs; the non eunuch males served the palace outside of the Abbasid harem.

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One of the chief regions for the export of slaves to the Abbasid harem Caliphate came through Persia, which was a passage area for several slave trade routes: the saqaliba slave trade of Europeans from the Volga trade route; the slave trade of mainly Turks from the Samanid Empire in Central Asia; Christian Greeks, Armenians, and Georgians from the Caucasus by Muslim slavers; and the slave route of Hindu Indians following the Islamic invasion of India from the 8th-century onward.

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Abbasid harem system came to be a role model for the harems of later Islamic rulers, and the same model can be found in subsequent Islamic nations during the Middle Ages, such as the Caliphate of Cordoba and the harem of the Fatimid Caliphate, which consisted of the model of prominent mothers; slave concubines who became umm walad when giving birth; female Jawaris entertainers, qahramana's and eunuchs.

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The Abbasid harem system was fairly the same during the Ottoman Empire, with only minor changes in the model of the Imperial Harem.

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