Turkish television reported that Emine Erdogan shared his views during an official event in Ankara, where she made a story about the historical role of the Ottoman sultans.
It happened the day after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in a speech marking International women's day, said that the woman "is first and foremost a mother".
In the harems under one roof lived a family of the Sultan, maids and concubines. The harem of the Ottoman sultans housed in Istanbul's Topkapi Palace, which in 1924 became a Museum, and remains so to this day.
The whole family life of sultans took place in the harems, where they had wives, relatives and concubines. The number of inmates of the harem were several hundred. Male staff was presented exclusively by eunuchs.
Mrs. Erdogan said that the harem was a school for women of the Ottoman dynasty. According to Turkish mass media, she noted that the evidence of the lives of women in harems can serve as a "role model".
For example, who lived in the harems of concubines received some education, and well-fed. In addition, not all of them provide sexual services to the Sultan. But, of course, they could not leave the Palace in its sole discretion. Some Turkish citizens were quick to level criticism at the first lady in social networks.
Many social media users disagreed with the President's wife
"That women taught at some point in the harems, does not mean that they were school — wrote a user of the social network Twitter Ghazi Caglar, is complete nonsense! In the Sultan's harem at the same time could live up to 400 concubines".
"If the Ottoman harem was an educational institution, then why all the people who worked there men were castrated?" asks another user under the nickname anlam75.
"Those who praise the harems, sends his daughters not just anywhere, but in American universities" — ironically the man under the nickname kizmonot, hinting at a well-known fact that both daughters Erdogan was educated at the University of Indiana.
However, some Pro-government reporters were quick to note that Emine Erdogan was quite right, and women really received in the harems of a good education.
In 2014, Erdogan provoked outrage after declaring that "women and men are not equal". His comments Tuesday about the role of women has caused protests on the streets of Istanbul.