Ptolemy of Mauretania was the last known monarch of the Ptolemaic dynasty, although Queen Zenobia, of the short-lived Palmyrene Empire during the Crisis of the Third Century, would claim descent from Cleopatra.  Historian Cassius Dio records that she did so without informing her brother, dressed in an attractive manner, and charmed Caesar with her wit. Shakespeare has immortalised her love-affair with Mark Antony in his play Antony and Cleopatra, and in modern times, she has appeared in fine arts, burlesques, Hollywood films, and brand imagery, turning into a pop culture icon of Egyptomania, or the renewed interest of Europeans in ancient Egypt during the nineteenth century. , Surviving coinage of Cleopatra's reign include specimens from every regnal year, from 51 to 30 BC. Queen Arsinoe II (Ptolemaic Period, 300-100 BCE) Limestone This relief represents one of the great queens of the Ptolemaic Period, Arsinoe II, who was a strong-minded and influential ruler with her brother/husband Ptolemy II. , The Bust of Cleopatra in the Royal Ontario Museum represents a bust of Cleopatra in the Egyptian style.  By the end of the 20th century there were forty-three separate films, two hundred plays and novels, forty-five operas, and five ballets associated with Cleopatra.  Ptolemy XII responded to the threat of possible annexation by offering remuneration and lavish gifts to powerful Roman statesmen, such as Pompey during his campaign against Mithridates VI of Pontus, and eventually Julius Caesar after he became Roman consul in 59 BC.  The Roman History published by the official and historian Cassius Dio in the early 3rd century AD, while failing to fully comprehend the complexities of the late Hellenistic world, nevertheless provides a continuous history of the era of Cleopatra's reign.  Herod, who had personally advised Antony after the Battle of Actium that he should betray Cleopatra, traveled to Rhodes to meet Octavian and resign his kingship out of loyalty to Antony.  The high degree of inbreeding among the Ptolemies is also illustrated by Cleopatra's immediate ancestry, of which a reconstruction is shown below.  In this interpretation, Cleopatra can be seen grasping Antony and drawing him toward her while a serpent (i.e.  Ahenobarbus, wary of having Octavian's propaganda confirmed to the public, attempted to persuade Antony to have Cleopatra excluded from the campaign against Octavian. Like the earlier dynasties of ancient Egypt, the Ptolemaic dynasty practiced inbreeding including sibling marriage, but this did not start in earnest until nearly a century into the dynasty's history. , The inscriptions on the coins are written in Greek, but also in the nominative case of Roman coins rather than the genitive case of Greek coins, in addition to having the letters placed in a circular fashion along the edges of the coin instead of across it horizontally or vertically as was customary for Greek ones. [note 28], In the summer of 49 BC, Cleopatra and her forces were still fighting against Ptolemy XIII within Alexandria when Pompey's son Gnaeus Pompeius arrived, seeking military aid on behalf of his father.  Cleopatra had no other option but to stay in Egypt and negotiate with Octavian. Hereditary illnesses.  Apparent financial troubles led Cleopatra to debase her coinage, which included silver and bronze currencies but no gold coins like those of some of her distant Ptolemaic predecessors. This event, their marriage, and Antony's divorce of Octavian's sister Octavia Minor led to the Final War of the Roman Republic. You can easily improve your search by … Cleopatra VII Philopator (Koinē Greek: Κλεοπάτρα Φιλοπάτωρ; 69 BC – 10 August 30 BC) was the last active ruler of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt. Cleopatra was a descendent of the Ptolemaic dynasty, founded by Ptolemy I Soter who was a general in the army of Alexander the Great. But was Cleopatra, the last Ptolemaic queen of Egypt? Ptolemy VI Philometor was the sixth ruler of the Ptolemaic Dynasty. Take the case of Cleopatra, for instance.  Although the common view of Cleopatra was one of a prolific seductress, she had only two known sexual partners, Caesar and Antony, the two most prominent Romans of the time period, who were most likely to ensure the survival of her dynasty.  Cleopatra's childhood tutor was Philostratos, from whom she learned the Greek arts of oration and philosophy.  The combination of this hairstyle with a diadem is also featured in two surviving sculpted marble heads. When Cleopatra learned that Octavian planned to bring her to his Roman triumphal procession, she killed herself by poisoning, contrary to the popular belief that she was bitten by an asp.  The masculine form would have been written either as Kleópatros (Κλεόπᾰτρος) or Pátroklos (Πᾰ́τροκλος).  The resulting siege of the palace, with Caesar and Cleopatra trapped together inside, lasted into the following year of 47 BC.  After losing some 30,000 men, more than Crassus at Carrhae (an indignity he had hoped to avenge), Antony finally arrived at Leukokome near Berytus (modern Beirut, Lebanon) in December, engaged in heavy drinking before Cleopatra arrived to provide funds and clothing for his battered troops. [note 49] Antony received these troops but told Octavia not to stray east of Athens as he and Cleopatra traveled together to Antioch, only to suddenly and inexplicably abandon the military campaign and head back to Alexandria. [note 41] Perhaps owing to his still childless marriage with Calpurnia, Caesar remained publicly silent about Caesarion (but perhaps accepted his parentage in private).  At the expense of the Nabataean king Malichus I (a cousin of Herod), Cleopatra was also given a portion of the Nabataean Kingdom around the Gulf of Aqaba on the Red Sea, including Ailana (modern Aqaba, Jordan).  However, Cleopatra's position in Egypt was secure.  A third sculpted portrait of Cleopatra accepted by scholars as being authentic survives at the Archaeological Museum of Cherchell, Algeria.  Arguments in favor of it depicting Cleopatra include the strong connection of her house with that of the Numidian royal family, Masinissa and Ptolemy VIII Physcon having been associates, and Cleopatra's own daughter marrying the Numidian prince Juba II. It was one of four dynasties established by Alexander's successors, the others being the Seleucid dynasty, Ptolemaic dynasty and Attalid dynasty. Cleopatra VII took the throne of Egypt in 51 BC after the death of her father Ptolemy XII and ruled till 30 BC.  With two legions granted by Octavian and a thousand soldiers lent by Octavia, Antony traveled to Antioch, where he made preparations for war against the Parthians. They were the last dynasty of ancient Egypt.  Cleopatra requested that her children should inherit Egypt and that Antony should be allowed to live in exile in Egypt, offered Octavian money in the future, and immediately sent him lavish gifts. [note 69] Francisco Pina Polo writes that Cleopatra's coinage present her image with certainty and asserts that the sculpted portrait of the Berlin head is confirmed as having a similar profile with her hair pulled back into a bun, a diadem, and a hooked nose.  Cleopatra V (or VI) was expelled from the court of Ptolemy XII in late 69 BC, a few months after the birth of Cleopatra, while Ptolemy XII's three younger children were all born during the absence of his wife. , Other possible sculpted depictions of Cleopatra include one in the British Museum, London, made of limestone, which perhaps only depicts a woman in her entourage during her trip to Rome. The names of the last two, the short-lived Thirty-First Dynasty and the longer-lasting Ptolemaic Dynasty… Roman historiography and Latin poetry produced a generally critical view of the queen that pervaded later Medieval and Renaissance literature.  The French dramatist Victorien Sardou and Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw produced plays about Cleopatra, while burlesque shows such as F. C. Burnand's Antony and Cleopatra offered satirical depictions of the queen connecting her and the environment she lived in with the modern age. [note 8] In contrast, Cleopatra could speak multiple languages by adulthood and was the first Ptolemaic ruler to learn the Egyptian language. , Various coins, such as a silver tetradrachm minted sometime after Cleopatra's marriage with Antony in 37 BC, depict her wearing a royal diadem and a 'melon' hairstyle. ", Claims that Cleopatra was an illegitimate child never appeared in Roman propaganda against her. , Cleopatra VII was born in early 69 BC to the ruling Ptolemaic pharaoh Ptolemy XII and an unknown mother,[note 13] presumably Ptolemy XII's wife Cleopatra VI Tryphaena (also known as Cleopatra V Tryphaena),[note 14][note 4] the mother of Cleopatra's older sister, Berenice IV Epiphaneia.  The commission of the painting most likely coincides with the erection of the Temple of Venus Genetrix in the Forum of Caesar in September 46 BC, where Caesar had a gilded statue erected depicting Cleopatra.  Cleopatra refused Antony's requests that she return to Egypt, judging that by blocking Octavian in Greece she could more easily defend Egypt. In 58 BC, Cleopatra presumably accompanied her father, Ptolemy XII Auletes, during his exile to Rome after a revolt in Egypt (a Roman client state) allowing his daughter Berenice IV to claim the throne.  Inheriting her father's debts, Cleopatra also owed the Roman Republic 17.5 million drachmas.  To the west Cleopatra was handed Cyrene along the Libyan coast, as well as Itanos and Olous in Roman Crete. [note 5] As a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, she was a descendant of its founder Ptolemy I Soter, a Macedonian Greek general and companion of Alexander the Great. , Gabinius was put on trial in Rome for abusing his authority, for which he was acquitted, but his second trial for accepting bribes led to his exile, from which he was recalled seven years later in 48 BC by Caesar. [note 87] The family tree given below also lists Cleopatra V, Ptolemy XII's wife, as a daughter of Ptolemy X Alexander I and Berenice III, which would make her a cousin of her husband, Ptolemy XII, but she could have been a daughter of Ptolemy IX Lathyros, which would have made her a sister-wife of Ptolemy XII instead. 69-30BC; last ruler of the Ptolemaic Dynasty; connected with Roman generals Julius Caesar and Mark Anthony; allied with Romans in forces lost at Battle of Actium (31BC) which led to Roman general Octavian's annexation of Egypt and suicide of general Anthony and Cleopatra in 30BC. [note 79], Cleopatra I Syra was the only member of the Ptolemaic dynasty known for certain to have introduced some non-Greek ancestry.  Cleopatra's visitors at Caesar's villa across the Tiber included the senator Cicero, who found her arrogant. It is, therefore, clear that Cleopatra was not Arab but of Macedonian Greek descent.  A long-held royal Egyptian practice, it was loathed by contemporary Greeks.  Although a violation of sacred and legal rights, Octavian forcefully acquired the document from the Temple of Vesta, and it became a useful tool in the propaganda war against Antony and Cleopatra.  Cleopatra received messages from both Gaius Cassius Longinus, one of Caesar's assassins, and Publius Cornelius Dolabella, proconsul of Syria and Caesarian loyalist, requesting military aid. As a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, she was a descendant of its founder Ptolemy I Soter, a Macedonian Greek general and companion of Alexander the Great. , Dellius was sent as Antony's envoy to Artavasdes II in 34 BC to negotiate a potential marriage alliance that would wed the Armenian king's daughter to Alexander Helios, the son of Antony and Cleopatra. [note 44], Octavian, Antony, and Marcus Aemilius Lepidus formed the Second Triumvirate in 43 BC, in which they were each elected for five-year terms to restore order in the Republic and bring Caesar's assassins to justice.  Bibulus, siding with Pompey in Caesar's Civil War, failed to prevent Caesar from landing a naval fleet in Greece, which ultimately allowed Caesar to reach Egypt in pursuit of Pompey.  Octavian was impressed by his speech and sense of loyalty, so he allowed him to maintain his position in Judea, further isolating Antony and Cleopatra. the asp) rises between her legs, Eros floats above, and Anton, the alleged ancestor of the Antonian family, looks on in despair as his descendant Antony is led to his doom. [note 54] The legal argument for war was based less on Cleopatra's territorial acquisitions, with former Roman territories ruled by her children with Antony, and more on the fact that she was providing military support to a private citizen now that Antony's triumviral authority had expired. Ancient Egypt - Ancient Egypt - Macedonian and Ptolemaic Egypt (332–30 bce): In the autumn of 332 bce Alexander the Great invaded Egypt with his mixed army of Macedonians and Greeks and found the Egyptians ready to throw off the oppressive control of the Persians.  It is possible that Caesar, married to the prominent Roman woman Calpurnia, also wanted to avoid being seen together with Cleopatra when she bore him their son.  However, the Gabiniani tortured and murdered these two, perhaps with secret encouragement by rogue senior administrators in Cleopatra's court. , As Antony prepared for another Parthian expedition in 35 BC, this time aimed at their ally Armenia, Octavia traveled to Athens with 2,000 troops in alleged support of Antony, but most likely in a scheme devised by Octavian to embarrass him for his military losses. , By the spring of 40 BC, Antony left Egypt due to troubles in Syria, where his governor Lucius Decidius Saxa was killed and his army taken by Quintus Labienus, a former officer under Cassius who now served the Parthian Empire. [note 37], Sometime between January and March of 47 BC, Caesar's reinforcements arrived, including those led by Mithridates of Pergamon and Antipater the Idumaean.  Octavian sent his diplomat Thyrsos to Cleopatra after she threatened to burn herself and vast amounts of her treasure within a tomb already under construction. [note 67] Both the Berlin Cleopatra and Vatican Cleopatra have royal diadems, similar facial features, and perhaps once resembled the face of her bronze statue housed in the Temple of Venus Genetrix. [note 45] Cleopatra managed to clear her name as a supposed supporter of Cassius, arguing she had really attempted to help Dolabella in Syria, and convinced Antony to have her exiled sister, Arsinoe IV, executed at Ephesus. [note 71] Her ivory-white skin, round face, long aquiline nose, and large round eyes were features common in both Roman and Ptolemaic depictions of deities. [note 34] Caesar then attempted to arrange for the other two siblings, Arsinoe IV and Ptolemy XIV, to rule together over Cyprus, thus removing potential rival claimants to the Egyptian throne while also appeasing the Ptolemaic subjects still bitter over the loss of Cyprus to the Romans in 58 BC.  Antony and Cleopatra may have been wed during this ceremony. [note 8]. , In 36 BC, Cleopatra accompanied Antony to the Euphrates in his journey toward invading the Parthian Empire.  Only fragments exist of the medical and cosmetic writings attributed to Cleopatra, such as those preserved by Galen, including remedies for hair disease, baldness, and dandruff, along with a list of weights and measures for pharmacological purposes.  While some in Antony's camp suggested abandoning the naval conflict to retreat inland, Cleopatra urged for a naval confrontation, to keep Octavian's fleet away from Egypt.  Octavian moved south and swiftly took Pelousion, while Cornelius Gallus, marching eastward from Cyrene, defeated Antony's forces near Paraitonion.  However, on 1 August 30 BC, Antony's naval fleet surrendered to Octavian, followed by Antony's cavalry. As a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, she was a descendant of its founder Ptolemy I Soter, a Macedonian Greek general and …  Pompey persuaded Aulus Gabinius, the Roman governor of Syria, to invade Egypt and restore Ptolemy XII, offering him 10,000 talents for the proposed mission.  In it she wears a royal diadem, red or reddish-brown hair pulled back into a bun,[note 74] pearl-studded hairpins, and earrings with ball-shaped pendants, the white skin of her face and neck set against a stark black background.  Burstein writes that partisan Roman writers would later accuse Cleopatra of cowardly deserting Antony, but their original intention of keeping their sails on board may have been to break the blockade and salvage as much of their fleet as possible. [note 43] As with their father Ptolemy XII, Caesar awarded both Cleopatra and Ptolemy XIV the legal status of "friend and ally of the Roman people" (Latin: socius et amicus populi Romani), in effect client rulers loyal to Rome. Shortly after the siege was lifted by reinforcements, Ptolemy XIII died in the 47 BC Battle of the Nile; Cleopatra's half-sister Arsinoe IV was eventually exiled to Ephesus for her role in carrying out the siege. , Cleopatra and Antony had the support of various allied kings, but Cleopatra had already been in conflict with Herod, and an earthquake in Judea provided him with an excuse to be absent from the campaign.  Dated to the mid-1st century BC, it is perhaps the earliest depiction of Cleopatra as both a goddess and ruling pharaoh of Egypt.  When Octavia returned to Rome Octavian portrayed his sister as a victim wronged by Antony, although she refused to leave Antony's household. [note 61] Inscriptions on contemporary Ptolemaic coinage and some Egyptian papyrus documents demonstrate Cleopatra's point of view, but this material is very limited in comparison to Roman literary works. , Since the 1950s scholars have debated whether or not the Esquiline Venus—discovered in 1874 on the Esquiline Hill in Rome and housed in the Palazzo dei Conservatori of the Capitoline Museums—is a depiction of Cleopatra, based on the statue's hairstyle and facial features, apparent royal diadem worn over the head, and the uraeus Egyptian cobra wrapped around the base. , During the spring of 32 BC Antony and Cleopatra traveled to Athens, where she persuaded Antony to send Octavia an official declaration of divorce.  Given her ancestral relations with the Seleucids, she was granted the region of Coele-Syria along the upper Orontes River.  Pliny the Elder claims in his Natural History that Cleopatra once dissolved a pearl worth tens of millions of sesterces in vinegar just to win a dinner-party bet.  A set of double doors on the rear wall of the painting, positioned very high above the people in it, suggests the described layout of Cleopatra's tomb in Alexandria.  Antony nearly committed suicide after hearing news of this but was stopped by his staff officers. Macedonian Greeks of Macedon are one of the ancient tribes of Greece. Their rule lasted for 275 years, from 305 BC to 30 BC. , In modern times Cleopatra has become an icon of popular culture, a reputation shaped by theatrical representations dating back to the Renaissance as well as paintings and films. Pompey had been a political ally of Ptolemy XII, but Ptolemy XIII, at the urging of his court eunuchs, had Pompey ambushed and killed before Caesar arrived and occupied Alexandria.  Roller affirms that "there seems little doubt that this is a depiction of Cleopatra and Caesarion before the doors of the Temple of Venus in the Forum Julium and, as such, it becomes the only extant contemporary painting of the queen. Cleopatra's legacy survives in ancient and modern works of art. [note 62] The fragmentary Libyka commissioned by Cleopatra's son-in-law Juba II provides a glimpse at a possible body of historiographic material that supported Cleopatra's perspective. , Georges Méliès's Robbing Cleopatra's Tomb (French: Cléopâtre), an 1899 French silent horror film, was the first film to depict the character of Cleopatra. Cleopatra VII Philopator (Koinē Greek: Κλεοπάτρα Φιλοπάτωρ; 69 BC – 10 August 30 BC) was the last active ruler of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt.  Cleopatra Selene II imported many important scholars, artists, and advisers from her mother's royal court in Alexandria to serve her in Caesarea, now permeated in Hellenistic Greek culture. [note 33], When Ptolemy XIII realized that his sister was in the palace consorting directly with Caesar, he attempted to rouse the populace of Alexandria into a riot, but he was arrested by Caesar, who used his oratorical skills to calm the frenzied crowd.  Antony wanted to cross the Adriatic Sea and blockade Octavian at either Tarentum or Brundisium, but Cleopatra, concerned primarily with defending Egypt, overrode the decision to attack Italy directly.  Discovered near a sanctuary of Isis in Rome and dated to the 1st century BC, it is either Roman or Hellenistic-Egyptian in origin.  She returned with an army, but her advance to Alexandria was blocked by her brother's forces, including some Gabiniani mobilized to fight against her, so she camped outside Pelousion in the eastern Nile Delta. [note 42] Cleopatra, on the other hand, made repeated official declarations about Caesarion's parentage, naming Caesar as the father. The Ptolemaic dynasty, also known as the Lagids or Lagidae, was a Macedonian Greek royal family who ruled over Egypt.  Behind her golden diadem, crowned with a red jewel, is a translucent veil with crinkles that suggest the "melon" hairstyle favored by the queen.  He allowed Gabinius's largely Germanic and Gallic Roman garrison, the Gabiniani, to harass people in the streets of Alexandria and installed his longtime Roman financier Rabirius as his chief financial officer. , Antony's enlargement of the Ptolemaic realm by relinquishing directly controlled Roman territory was exploited by his rival Octavian, who tapped into the public sentiment in Rome against the empowerment of a foreign queen at the expense of their Republic.  In preparation for the film starring Taylor as Cleopatra, women's magazines of the early 1960s advertised how to use makeup, clothes, jewelry, and hairstyles to achieve the "Egyptian" look similar to the queens Cleopatra and Nefertiti. He was appointed satrap of Egypt after Alexander's death in 323 BC. (000573.87-E004356.63NAVRLOSUC20V) Ptolemaic Egypt is distinctive in being both the last independent Egyptian dynasty and the last Hellenistic kingdom to fall to Rome.The Ptolemies were not native Egyptians, but Greek and Macedonian by descent. [note 78] She was presumably the daughter of Cleopatra VI Tryphaena (also known as Cleopatra V Tryphaena),[note 4] the sister-wife of Ptolemy XII who had previously given birth to their daughter Berenice IV. Cleopatra VII (reigned 51-30 BC) was the last ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt, coming to the throne in 51 BC after the death of her father Ptolemy XII Auletes.She has become a legend thanks to her relationships with two prominent Romans, Julius Caesar and Mark Antony. Hereditary illnesses. , Cleopatra's gender has perhaps led to her depiction as a minor if not insignificant figure in ancient, medieval, and even modern historiography about ancient Egypt and the Greco-Roman world. [note 7] In January of 27 BC Octavian was renamed Augustus ("the revered") and amassed constitutional powers that established him as the first Roman emperor, inaugurating the Principate era of the Roman Empire.  Cleopatra Selene II was bestowed with Crete and Cyrene. Their rule lasted from 305 BC to 30 BC for a total of 275 years. [note 31] Ptolemy XIII believed he had demonstrated his power and simultaneously defused the situation by having Pompey's head, severed and embalmed, sent to Caesar, who arrived in Alexandria by early October and took up residence at the royal palace.  While it is clear that both Cilicia and Cyprus were under Cleopatra's control by 19 November 38 BC, the transfer probably occurred earlier in the winter of 41–40 BC, during her time spent with Antony.  Surviving works include statues, busts, reliefs, and minted coins, as well as ancient carved cameos, such as one depicting Cleopatra and Antony in Hellenistic style, now in the Altes Museum, Berlin. Soon after Julius Caesar re… These included famine caused by drought and a low level of the annual flooding of the Nile, and lawless behavior instigated by the Gabiniani, the now unemployed and assimilated Roman soldiers left by Gabinius to garrison Egypt.  With his powers as a triumvir, Antony also had the broad authority to restore former Ptolemaic lands, which were currently in Roman hands, to Cleopatra. The first thirty divisions are due to the 3rd century BC Egyptian priest Manetho, and appeared in his now-lost work Aegyptiaca, which was perhaps written for the Greek-speaking Ptolemaic ruler of Egypt. Octavian engaged in a war of propaganda, forced Antony's allies in the Roman Senate to flee Rome in 32 BC, and declared war on Cleopatra.  The attribution of certain texts to Cleopatra, however, is doubted by Ingrid D. Rowland, who highlights that the "Berenice called Cleopatra" cited by the 3rd- or 4th-century female Roman physician Metrodora was likely conflated by medieval scholars as referring to Cleopatra. , In 50 BC Marcus Calpurnius Bibulus, proconsul of Syria, sent his two eldest sons to Egypt, most likely to negotiate with the Gabiniani and recruit them as soldiers in the desperate defense of Syria against the Parthians.