Gallery of Harem Art and Harem Pictures

Online review of the novel HAREM GIRL - illustrated and guided from a gallery of harem pictures, harem paintings, and harem art. Each picture links to online chapters and excerpts from the book.

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Slave MarketOrientalist art depicting harem life was a source of inspiration for some of the chapters in Harem Girl. One of many slave girl pictures, by painter Jean-Léon Gérôme, is used for the front cover of Saalih's book . The scene is a slave market in Cairo, Egypt, and I thought this commentary by William Muller made in 1830 was fitting:

"The slave market was one of my favorite haunts. In the center of this court, the slave girls are exposed for sale, often as many as thirty or forty. I did not see the dejection and sorrow I was led to imagine, watching the Master remove the entire covering of a female slave and expose her to the gaze of a bystander."

Click on any thumbnail below, or on "Read more", to read the corresponding online chapter or except from Saalih's book - Harem Girl.


To find a beginning I must go back to when I was fourteen, when I was neither a child nor an adult. I had stopped playing children's games such as pick-up-stones, dressing up in my mother's too-big clothes, and climbing into the forked branches of the old olive tree. Boys had become exciting to me, they made me blush and feel uneasy, and I had my showings—but in my mind, I was not yet a woman. At that point, I had no plans for my life—what fourteen-year-old does? Certainly, I had romantic thoughts, love and marriage, and other dreams young girls have, even so, being a slave girl in a harem was not one of them. I was not seeking change; I was content in life to follow the path that unfolded before me—I still believed in happy endings.

1001 Arabian Nights1001 Arabian Nights.

I was fifteen years old when I caught a glimpse of the book on the bedside table, open at a colorful illustration showing a turbaned Sultan and a naked woman in a close embrace.

(This illustration could well have been the start of Sapphira's fascination with harems - a fascination that ultimately led to her fateful journey.)

Carpet MerchantArabian Carpet Merchant - lies and deceit.

“Sheik Ahmad, is Kassim your slave?”

“No. She is a traveling companion. I brought her back with me after a voyage to India. She is under my care until I make other arrangements for her. She wants to be placed in a harem.”

“I would like that for myself; to be placed in a harem for a while,” I ventured.

Brazilian Waxing Shaved Girl SlaveThorough Waxing - her journey starts.

“Are you,” he asked, pointing his beard with long strokes of his fingers, “groomed in the style of the harem?”

“Oh yes,” I replied, passing my fingers through my long shiny hair and then tossing it back over my shoulder, although I knew what he was alluding to.

“That is not what I meant. Have you been smoothed? Have you been waxed or shaved? Lift your skirt. Let me see."

New Slave for the HaremRevealed.

Sheik Ali bin Shareef al-Saalih was waiting.... “Reveal yourself; Slave Sapphira, my eyes are curious.”

I stood unmoving before him, bashful and restrained.

Mustafa interpreted my hesitation to obey as shyness, and quickly explained to the sheik.

“If that is the cause, some help is required. Talil will encourage you,” he said. He had no sooner spoken than the second eunuch rose to his feet, a whip in hand.

Slave PositionThe Bow - first lesson.

“Lean backwards, slowly, until your head and hands touch the floor behind you. Now, raise your hips and chest to make a smooth arch from your knees to your hands, letting your hands slide back along the floor as you raise yourself. Your breasts should be uppermost, at the top of the arch. We call this ‘making the bow’,” he said, as the handle of his whip traced the curved path from the front of my thighs, over my hips and breasts, and down my neck.


Hennaed NipplesHennaed.

At the snap of his fingers, the servant took away the wax and brought to him another, smaller porcelain pot. “Henna,” he offered by way of explanation. “The dark brown color that comes from this Persian Black will look well against your skin. It will improve the allure of your breasts when you are not rouged.”


Crawling Slave girlFirst Night in the Bedchamber .

“When you enter through these doors you disrobe down to your night garments behind this screen, and then walk around to here,” he said, pointing to the start of the carpet, “and drop to your knees. Then you will crawl on your hands and knees along this carpet until you reach the round kneeling mat at the foot of the bed. There you will present yourself in any of the ways I have shown you...

New Slave for His BirthdayBirthday Girl .

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.


Oral Sex in the HaremPleasuring.

Sitting down on the divan, he untied his caftan and leaned back against the backrest, beckoning me to lay down naked beside him and cradle my face in his lap. Arousal flickered within me, and encouraged by his gentle words and caressing, I eagerly brought about what he sought.

Share of the Spoils

Enslaved Captives - destined for the harem.

Warring between nations and tribes had always been the main source of slaves throughout history. Spoils flowed to the victors, the vanquished taken as slaves, and sold along with their seized possessions. Tribal war and rivalries yielded black African men and women slaves, and in the Far East, gold purchased Asian girls who came back overland along with silks and other goods in one of the many trade caravans traveling the Great Silk Road.

Nipple rings

Between Dignity and Desire

Rings and dangling jewels graced nipples and ears, dark eyes flashed beneath gold sprinkled eyelids, necklaces swung about elegant necks. Taut bellies held brilliants tightly, and ankle bells and bracelets tinkled their beguiling tune.


Arab Souk

Arab Town

...our destination came into welcomed view as we crossed over the brow of the last of many tiresome dunes. Spread before us was the town of Ranyah , shimmering in the heat.... I saw people moving about, passing in and out of the cool dark shadows cast by the colorful awnings of the souk and market square.

Shackled SlaveShackled

Two sturdy wood poles supported the canvas roof of his tent, and ominously, hammered high into one of them was a black iron ring. A chain with gaping open wrist shackles riveted to each end dangled from the ring. A key hung from a small nail.

Arabian slave Auction

Slave Auction

From the moment I saw the black braid hanging down her back I knew she was one of Ahmad’s “Pearls of Allah” standing on a raised platform, with her back to us, naked—hands and feet bound. A slave for sale.

A Hammam attendant Massages a naked Harem Girl

Hammam Massage

In the room that had been reserved for our exclusive use, our attendants, two black women, were adding pitchers of heavily perfumed water to the hot bath. I asked them to bring in a large mirror; Topaz would surely be curious to see how she looked after her smoothing at the hands of the local barber.

Hussein's Women

Hussein's Concubines

Although I knew about them, this was the first time I had seen metal breast bridles worn. Against the black Oromo skin, they were most alluring. One of the girls, her pert and firm breasts requiring no support, wore only many arm bangles, ankle bracelets, and a large broach on the back of her flimsy skirt that drew the eye to the graceful curve of her back and what lay below.

Anal Pleasure


Most husbands, I suspect, have propositioned their wives at one time or other for this kind of lovemaking. Most wives, I suspect, have refused. In slave harems, nonbelievers accepted this invasion—they could not refuse or question the propriety of it.


Branding irons and brazier


At sundown tomorrow, we had to go to the eunuchs’ quarters where Yasmeen and Mustafa would make us ready. Later that night we would be marked as his slaves.

The Book

Where to Buy the Book

Surprise your lover - and yourself. Buy the book and show another side of you!

Harem Girl is available as an ebook and 9" x 6" trade paperback.


Glossary and List of the Girls of the Harem
Readers Write

Waiting for Punishment in the Harem
Awaiting Punishment
Slave Market in North Africa
African Slave Market
Desert Palace Ruins
Palace Ruins
Blue Door in Tunisia
Door in Tunisia
Harem Marraige bed
Show Me

Buyer Inspects a White Slave
White Slave