Sultan Moulay Ismail Ibn Sharif was the second ruler of the Alaouite dynasty. He was the seventh son of Moulay Sharif and was governor of the Kingdom of Fez and the north of Morocco from 1667 until the death of his half-brother, Sultan Moulay Rashid in 1672.
He was proclaimed sultan at Fez but spent several years in conflict with his nephew Moulay Ahmed ben Mehrez, who also claimed the throne, until the latter’s death in 1687. Moulay Ismail’s 55-year reign is the longest of any sultan of Morocco.
He’s the most gruesome character in the history of Morocco. the country’s own Vlad the Impaler has some dubious claims to fame — including fathering more kids than anyone else in history.
No one dared looked at Ismail’s wives or concubines, such a person could be killed.
Here are some of the things that made the Sultan infamous;
He killed more than 30,000 people in his life
Ismail was not, by any accounts, a very nice man. In fact, he’s been quoted as having said,
“My subjects are like rats in a basket, and if I do not keep shaking the basket, they will gnaw their way through.”
It’s estimated that 30,000 poor souls met their deaths at the hands of the sultan — often for no reason.
He was well known to kill people during fits of rage. According to one story, the sultan lopped off the head of a slave who had been adjusting his stirrup as he was mounting his horse. They didn’t call him “the Bloodthirsty” for nothing.
He was a s3x addict — and fathered more children than anyone else in history.
Legend has it that Ismail had s3x every single day — which wouldn’t be too tough to do if you had over 500 women to choose from. So, he was well-known for siring hundreds of children.
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, he fathered 888 children — the highest number of offspring for anyone throughout history that can be verified.
Each of the 500 concubines in Ismail’s harem had their own eunuch and handmaiden
He was fiercely protective of his four wives and 500 concubines.
Whenever a tribe surrendered to Moulay Ismail, the leader was forced to offer his most beautiful daughter to the sultan as a gift.
The women were treated like Ismail’s favorite toys. Each concubine was granted a personal eunuch, a castrated male slave, and an odalisque, or female attendant.
The lake-like Bassin de l’Agdal in Meknès served as an emergency source of water in times of war and a pool for his concubines in times of peace.
Men who merely glanced at one of his wives or concubines were punished by death.
It’s said that men who encountered the sultan’s women laid facing the ground, so as to avoid any accusation of having looked upon them.
If any of Ismail’s harem were suspected of adultery, they were severely punished or put to death.
The women were either strangled by the sultan himself or had their breasts cut off or teeth extracted.
He amputated his son to protect his throne
The sultan’s favorite wife was once a concubine who convinced him to punish his son in a horrific manner.
Ismail’s favorite wife and queen of the palace was a black woman who started out as a concubine.
Her name was Lalla Aisha Mubarka, or Zaydana, the name she acquired after giving birth to the sultan’s first son, Zaydan.
She held sway over Ismail and hatched a scheme to depose his favorite son, Mohammed al-Alim, suggesting that he intended to proclaim himself the sultan of Morocco.
For his punishment, Ismail had his son’s left arm and right leg amputated for supposedly having rebelled against him.
This was intended to send a message that any disobedience would mean severe punishment or death. Not surprisingly, Al-Alim died from blood loss.
Ismail’s Black Guard, made up of captured sub-Saharan slaves, acted as the sultan’s personal bodyguards
Ismail created a massive self-generating army
The formidable Black Guard was comprised of slave warriors acquired from sub-Saharan Africa.
Considered loyal, as they no longer had any tribal affiliation, the Blackguards were Ismail’s personal guards and servants.
By the end of his reign, he had raised a powerful army of more than 150,000 men.
These men had families and lived in communities of their own, but essentially belonged to Ismail.
The boys were raised to serve in his army, which helped Ismail maintain his position and conquer the whole of Morocco from European kingdoms. The girls would marry, have children and continue the cycle.
The Black Guard exists to this day, though its name was changed to the Moroccan Royal Guard after the country gained its independence in 1956.