7 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Sarah Baartman

2 Posted by - December 3, 2022 - BLACK WOMEN, LATEST POSTS, SLAVERY

The story of Sarah (Saartjie) Baartman is well known. She was the most famous of at least two Khoikhoi women who were exhibited as freak show attractions in Europe in the 1800s.  While many are familiar with her story, there are a few interesting facts that are commonly overlooked. Check them out below:

1. She spoke 4 languages

While many people believe that Baartman only spoke Dutch, she actually spoke a number languages. In addition to her native tongue, she spoke fluent Dutch, passable English, and a little bit of French.

2. She was exhibited over 100 times in London, alone

London was Baartman’s first stop after she was taken from South Africa. While she left willingly, she was mislead into what she would actually be doing (for the rest of her life). Before leaving London, she was exhibited over 200 times.

3. She refused to show her elongated labial lips 

One of Baartman’s most fascinating features to European patrons were her elongated labial lips which hung about 3-4 inches down. Scientists were fascinated by this feature and repeatedly begged and even offered her money to show them to the public, but Baartman refused every time. At times she would pose naked but would demand that she wear an apron around her waste to hide her genitals.

4. She was a skilled musician 

French naturalist Georges Cuvier noted in his studies of Baartman that she could dance according to the traditions of her country, had a lively personality, and was extremely skilled at playing the Jew’s Harp.

5. For extra cash, civilians were allowed touch her

Baartman was considered a freak of nature by Europeans. For extra pay, one could poke and prod her with a stick or finger. Baartman was said to have been treated like an animal in a cage. It is speculated that she even had to wear a collar at one point.

6. She declined a rescue attempt 

After the passing of the Slave Trade Act 1807, the African Association began a newspaper campaign to have Baartman released. They took the matter to court but Baartman stated that she was not under restraint, had not been sexually abused and that she came to London on her own free will. She also said that she understood that she was only receiving half of the profits that she earned and that she did not wish to return home. These statements remained contradictory to that of eyewitnesses, but the case was still dismissed.

Read More At http://oogeewoogee.com/know-your-blackhistory-7-little-known-facts-about-sarah-baartman/


  • savanna cole May 21, 2018 - 1:28 pm

    i feel real bad for her but at the same time i dont becasue she must have liked it if she declined a rescue attempt and she let civillians touch her for extra cash REALLY SARAH BAARTMAN she is living a historian lfe even in death

    • Sha June 10, 2019 - 11:19 pm

      What’s ur ethnicity, hav 2b dwight ppl at it agn #jAltheseeuropeans and #freecounselorng4ourkingsNkweens #culture R.I.P
      Hw dare u….it shuld happn 2 u….REALLY it shuld Savannah cole

      • Sheila June 13, 2019 - 10:44 am

        Savanna srop it! Do some research.

      • Carol Batiste June 13, 2019 - 5:02 pm

        Savanna Cole,
        When have you known black people in our history to truly been given
        a choice? White people, more than likely men, were making money off of her. I’m sure she was TOLD what to say when she was asked if she wanted to leave. Some people SAY that black people didn’t really mind being slaves. Do you believe THAT lie too???

    • Nichole June 11, 2019 - 5:16 am

      Clearly the above comment came from a young, dumb, white girl whose only knowledge of Ms. Baartman is from the exerpt she just read. It pays to do research before voicing your option, so you don’t sound so damn ignorant.

    • Jeff Clark June 15, 2019 - 3:15 pm

      Sounds like Ms. Cole would be perfect for the Trump Administration! Stay stupid and deny everything.

    • Tee June 16, 2019 - 12:09 am

      You’re a dumb bitch ?

  • Melissa April 14, 2019 - 10:16 am

    Probably one of the most ignorant comments I’ve ever read. Clearly you, Savanna do not have any understanding of history/historical facts.
    Please keep these kind of comments to yourself.

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    • Teresa June 11, 2019 - 1:35 pm

      Amen to the responses from Sha, Nicole & Melissa!!!!

  • how to get help in windows 10 May 30, 2019 - 5:19 am

    Your mode of telling the whole thing in this article is in fact fastidious, every one can simply understand it, Thanks a lot.

    • Marshall Freeman June 11, 2019 - 5:08 pm

      Amen ladies, amen, never forget, this dumb ass belongs to a very EXCLUSIVE CLUB, it’s called IGNORANCE, IT’S MEMBERSHIP DOES NOT EXPIRE!!!!!!!!

      • TONYA June 12, 2019 - 11:14 pm

        Of course she is going to say what will keep her alive who she was going to tell they wouldn’t let her go. So that was a dumb thing to say from Savannah.

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  • Deborah coleman June 11, 2019 - 1:24 pm

    I would love to here more about my history

  • Tenniel Jordan June 11, 2019 - 5:42 pm

    It never ceases to amaze me how little our own people know of their real history. What is more, they lack the desire to find out. I want to know more. How can I understand where I am going if I don’t have a real grasp of where I came from? America, Europe and other countries as well try to hide their dastardly deeds. It pays to research and find little known facts. Dig up those skeletons. I want to know. I am a culmination of races. My third great grandmother was born into slavery. I had a brief moment with her before she passed in 1981. She was well over one hundred years old. Oh, the stories she shared. Her insight into this world, God etc. My ancestry is a mix as I said before. 15% sub-saharan African, 43% Jordanian or Middle Eastern, 40% Native American and the rest Eastern European.

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  • Brenda Owens June 13, 2019 - 3:35 pm

    If you people who are condemning this person for writing this have done enough investigation to condemn this author. Then kindly show us,because I’m tired of people screaming because they don’t like the content of the message. However you don’t mind hearing about people like other assorted sideshow freaks. Like the Asian twins, Elephant man, and the dog faced girl. Kinda hypocritical don’t you think?

  • D June 17, 2019 - 9:29 am

    Eyewitnesses contrdicted the story she didn’t want to be rescued how can you say you don’t feel sorry for her. Racism at it’s finest.

  • Viviane Ducheine June 17, 2019 - 5:56 pm

    She was forced to refuse the rescue attempt.

  • Lwazi May 13, 2020 - 10:10 am

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