An odalisque (Turkish: Odalık) was a chambermaid or a female attendant in a Turkish seraglio, particularly the court ladies in the household of the Ottoman sultan.
An odalık was not a concubine of the harem, but a maid, although it was possible that she could become one. An odalık was ranked at the bottom of the social stratification of a harem, serving not the man of the household, but rather, his concubines and wives as personal chambermaids. Odalık were usually slaves given as gifts to the sultan by wealthy Turkish men. Generally, an odalık was never seen by the sultan but instead remained under the direct supervision of his mother, the Valide Sultan.
If an odalık was of extraordinary beauty or had exceptional talents in dancing or singing, she would be trained as a possible concubine. If selected, an odalık trained as a court lady would serve the sultan sexually and only after such sexual contact would she change in status, becoming thenceforth one of the consorts of the sultan.
In contrast to European depictions of nude harem women, they more often wore androgynous robes resembling those worn by the male pages of the palace. The conditions of the Ottoman harem “resembled a monastery for young girls more than the bordello of European imagination. More on an odalisque
Charles Louis Müller [also known as Müller de Paris] (Paris 22 December 1815 – 10 January 1892 Paris) was a French painter. He was a fecund producer of historic pictures and portraits.
A pupil of two renowned masters of neoclassical and pre – romantic painting , Antoine-Jean Gros and Léon Cogniet , he was a versatile talent, a painter of history , a genre painter , a portraitist and a decorator. Presented at the Salon in 1834, he exposes until his death and is awarded several times.
It also enjoyed strong institutional recognition. He is appointed inspector of works of art at the Manufacture des Gobelins . Elected member of the Academy of Fine Arts in 1864, Charles Müller sat as a member of the admission committees for the 1878 World Fair in Paris. Decorated with the Legion of Honor in 1849, he was elevated to the rank of officer of the same order in 1859. More on Charles Louis Müller
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