Phanariot Greek Ladies

Daniel Valentine RivièreMid-19th Century

Pera Museum

Pera Museum
Istanbul, Türkiye

This painting, which depicts the interior of a house in the first half of the 19th century, portrays a lady sitting on the sofa, and her servant holding a chibouk (pipe) to offer to her lady. The figures are surrounded by various objects of Ottoman domestic life. The habit of drinking coffee and smoking chibouk, which were important elements of harem life that also intrigued many western artists since the early 18th century, stand out in the painting. One of the earliest examples representing a similar theme, which had a significant impact in the subsequent periods, is Vanmour’s “Turkish Girl Drinking Coffee on the Sofa” from his Recueil de Cent Estampes Representant Différentes Nations du Levant. With their carefully depicted details, the motifs on the garments, the rug and the sofa, as well as the engraved coffee table with cups, the fan, the small brazier on the floor and the chibouk held by the servant, manifest the artist’s meticulous work. The unsigned painting is attributed to British artist Rivière.


  • Title: Phanariot Greek Ladies
  • Creator: Daniel Valentine Rivière
  • Creator Lifespan: 1780 - 1854
  • Creator Nationality: British
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Creator Death Place: England
  • Creator Birth Place: England
  • Date Created: Mid-19th Century
  • Physical Dimensions: w490 x h380 cm
  • Type: mixed media on paper
  • Rights: Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation Collection, Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation
  • External Link: Orientalist Paintings Collection
  • Pera Museum: Orientalist Paintings Collection

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