Una esclava en venta, 1897. JOSÉ JIMÉNEZ de ARANDA.
Greek slave for sale in East market, completely naked, on a carpet.
The inscription hanging on her throat mentions in Greek: “Rose, 18 years old, for sale for 800 coins”. The girl turns her head to the ground to hide her shame, the attitude of her hands and legs suggest the same. The legs of potential buyers are visible behind the naked body of the girl.
This was the tough fate of many women and children who were abducted in the looting and attacks by the Ottomans in the 400 years of occupation of Greece and of all Hellenism in Asia Minor, the Pontus, the Middle East and Egypt. This painting is one of the most emblematic of José Jiménez Aranda. It is also a truly unique work of this great Spanish Sevilleian artist.