The Legend that Could be True:the Cousin of Josephine,wife of Napoleon,had been made a Slave and later Wife of the Ottoman Sultan
Western Christians (Spaniards,Italians,Frenchmen,etc) enslaved by the Muslims between 1500-1800
Between 1500-1800 at least one million and even 1.25 million were enslaved,most of them Spaniards and Italians.That is the conclusion of Robert Davis.His scholarly book on the theme is“Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters: White Slavery in the Mediterranean, the Barbary Coast and Italy, 1500-1800 “(2004). It was the done by the Muslim Moroccans,Tunisians and Algerians.
About 90% of those enslaved were men, and the women,about 50,000 in 3 centuries, were destined to be sex slaves in a harem.Only 5% of them, like Miguel de Cervantes(1547–1616) and St. Vincent de Paul, were ransomed or escaped.
It is estimated that 600,000 Europeans were slaves in Algiers.
Here are articles about Davis’ book:
The legend that could be true:a cousin of Napoleon’s wife was the wife of the Ottoman Sultan
About Aimée du Buc de Rivéry (1776-1817)
1.”Aimée” in French means “beloved” and she was a cousin of Empress Josephine of France and was the daughter of wealthy French plantation owners in Pointe Royale,in the Caribbean island of Martinique. After being sent to a convent school in France, she was returning home in July or August 1788 when the ship she was on vanished at sea.She was 11 years old.
2.It is thought that the ship was attacked and taken by Muslim pirates,and that she was sent to Istanbul as a gift to the Ottoman Sultan by the Bey of Algiers.
3.And that was the same person as Nakshidil,a Christian slave girl,who became the Valide Sultan/Queen Mother of the Ottoman Empire.
4.Both women existed historically,the question is if they were the same person.
Who was Joséphine de Beauharnais (1763-1814)?
She was the first wife of Napoléon Bonaparte(1769-1821) , and thus the first Empress of the French. Her first husband Alexandre de Beauharnais was guillotined during the Reign of Terror of 1794,where 20,000-40,000 innocent people were killed by the French revolutionaries,including the great scientist Antoine Lavoisier(1743-1794),the founder of modern chemistry. She did not bear Napoleon any children, as a result, he divorced her in 1810 to marry princess Marie Louise of Austria.She was born in Martinique to a wealthy white Creole family that owned a sugar plantation and was the daughter of Joseph-Gaspard Tascher (1735–1790).
1.Aimée became the 4th wife of Sultan Abdul Hamid I, taking the name of Nakshidil. She introduced French ideas to the Ottoman people, especially the sultan, and her French-style reforms may have led to his death at the hands of the Janissaries and the religious scholars, which were against the liberalization of the empire. During the rule of Abdul Hamid I, Aimée taught him French, and for the first time, a permanent ambassador was sent from Istanbul to Paris.
2.Nakshidil decorated the palace in rococo style, which was popular in France at that time and had a son named Mahmud II, who became sultan after his father’s death.
3.At one point assasins also sought to kill Mahmud, but Nakshidil saved her son by concealing him inside a furnace. Thus Mahmud became the next Sultan, accomplishing significant reforms in the empire that were, for the most part, attributed to the influence of his mother.
4.Although Aimée accepted Islam she always remained a Roman Catholic in her heart. Her last wish was for a priest to perform the last rites. Her son did not deny her this favor.
In reality the history of Aimée du Buc de Rivéry is difficult to trace, particularly after she reportedly became part of the royal harem.
all the women of the sultan were given Turkish names when they entered the harem.
Aimée could not have been the biological mother of Mahmud II
1.This is not possible since according to the documents she was still living in France at the time of Mahmud’s birth in 1785 when Aimée was but nine years old.
2.She could, however, have been the woman who raised him, perhaps after his real mother’s death.
3.Whatever the case, the woman who was valide sultan during this period was very western and French-influenced, she was said to have given the sultan French lessons, sending an embassy to Paris, and reforming the harem by giving the women permission to go on picnics and boat travels along the coasts outside the palace.
Who was Mahmud II (1785-1839)?
He was the 30th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and ruled 1808-1839, and was the son of Sultan Abdulhamid I. His reign is notable mostly for the extensive administrative, military and fiscal reforms which culminated with the Decree of Tanzimat (Reorganization)in 1839 that was carried out by his sons Abdülmecid I and Abdülaziz I.The Tanzimat marked the beginning of modernization in Turkey, and had immediate effects on social and legal aspects of life in the Empire, such as European style clothing, architecture, legislation, institutional organization and land reform.
In 1808 the half-brother of Mahmud II,who was Mustafa IV (1807–08) ordered his execution along with his cousin, the deposed Sultan Selim III (1789–1807). Selim III was killed, but Mahmud was safely kept hidden and placed on the throne after the rebels deposed Mustafa IV.
a)His reign included the first major division from the Ottoman Empire by Greece,which became independent.The Muslims inflicted horrible massacres on the Greeks.The Greek revolt began in 1821 and finished in 1827 when the Russian,English and French navies defeated defeated the Ottoman Navy at the Battle of Navarino
b)Later in 1830 the French invaded and began the conquest of Algeria,then part of the Ottoman Empire.
c)He eliminated the Janissaries,the Ottoman soldiers, which for the first 300 years had consisted of Christian children stolen from their parents and forced to become Muslim.From 500,000 to 1 million Christian children were thus forced to become Muslim.Later the group became hereditary and in 1826 it was eliminated by Mahmud II with a massacre of more than 4,000 Janissaries.They were replaced by a modern army.
About the origin of Nakshidil
According to information claimed to have been found by Dr. Fikret Saraçoğlu in the archives of the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul,the palace of the sultan,she was a Christian slave girl from the Caucasus region.Slavery is permitted in the Koran,it is never condemned and in fact the liberation of a slave in the Koran depends on the master,if he thinks the slave deserves freedom.The Coran
A Muslim Slave can be Freed but Only with the Approval of the Master
“And let those who find not the means to marry be abstinent till God enriches them of His bounty.
Those your right hands own (Note:slaves):
1.Who seek emancipation, contract with them accordingly,
2.If you know some good in them(Note:if they deserve it) and give them of the wealth of God that He has given you.
And constrain not your slave-girls to prostitution, if they desire to live in chastity, that you may seek the chance goods of the present life. Whosoever constrains them, surely God, after their being constrained, is All-forgiving, All-compassionate.”
It is also made implicit in this verse:
1.Say to the captives (Note:people made slaves in war) in your hands:
2.“If God knows of any good in your hearts(Note:if you deserve it)
3.He will give you better than what has been taken from you(Note:their freedom had been taken), and He will forgive you; surely God is All-forgiving, All-compassionate.””
“You are taking the verses out of context”
They mean to say that there is something:
1.In the 23-year career of Muhammad and/or
2.In the Muslim traditions,
That limit the existence of slavery to Muhammad’s lifetime,the for Muhammad slavery was to be gradually abolished.That is not true.We know because after Muhammad died in 632 he was succeeded by:
a)Abu Bekr,his father-in-law (ruled 632-634)
b)Omar (one of Muhammad’s generals and friends)(ruled 634-644,assasinated)
c)Othman(another of Muhammad’s friends)(ruled 644-656,assasinated)
d)Ali,the son-in-law and cousin of Muhammad,married to Fatima,Muhammad’s daughter( ruled from 656-661,and was later assasinated).
There is nothing in the documents about the friends and relatives of Muhammad that say they were for abolishing slavery,that it was only temporary,etc. The Koran-only Muslims can’t deny it.
To verify the Koranic citations go to quranbrowser.com, which has:
1.Six translations by Muslims.
2.Four translations by Non-Muslims.
3.The text in Arabic,with Latin letters.
One can translate using Google Translate