Facts of Cleopatra, Turns Out Not Egyptian

Facts of Cleopatra, Turns Out Not Egyptian

Cleopatra Facts – Many people know that all this time that Cleopatra or Cleopatra VII Philopator was the ruler of Egypt, who became a very influential figure in the Kingdom of Ancient Egypt and even Cleopatra's figure is also famous until now.

Cleopatra was not only a ruler, but also a diplomat, admiral, administrator, polyglot, and poet of medicine. But maybe there are some facts that may be not many readers know that Cleopatra was not originally from Egypt, what are the facts?

A 1963 film about her is one of the most expensive films of all time.

The Queen of the Nile has been portrayed on the silver screen by the likes of Claudette Colbert and Sophia Loren, but was most famously played by Elizabeth Taylor in the 1963 ancient world film "Cleopatra." The film was plagued by production and script problems, and its budget eventually jumped from $2 million to $44 million—including about $200,000 just to cover the cost of Taylor's costume. It was the most expensive film ever made at the time of its release, and nearly bankrupted the studio despite making a lot of money at the box office. If inflation is taken into account, “Cleopatra” remains one of the most expensive films in history even today.

She is the result of incest

Like many other kingdoms, members of the Ptolemaic dynasty often married into families to maintain the purity of their lineage. More than a dozen of Cleopatra's ancestors tied the knot with cousins or siblings, and it is likely that her own parents were brothers and sisters. In keeping with this custom, Cleopatra eventually married her two teenage brothers, who respectively served as ceremonial spouses and deputy regents at different times during her reign.

She leads the fleet in naval battles.

Cleopatra eventually married Mark Antony and had three children with him, but their relationship also spawned a major scandal in Rome. Antony's rival Octavian used propaganda to portray him as a traitor under the influence of a cunning seducer, and in 32 BC, the Roman Senate declared war on Cleopatra. The conflict reached its climax the following year in the famous naval battle at Actium. Cleopatra personally led several dozen Egyptian warships into battle with Antony's fleet, but they were no match for Octavian's navy. The battle soon turned to defeat, and Cleopatra and Antony were forced to break through Roman lines and flee to Egypt.

She was living in Rome at the time of Caesar's assassination.

Cleopatra joined Julius Caesar in Rome starting in 46 BC, and her presence seems to have caused quite a stir. Caesar didn't hide that she was his mistress—she even came to town with their child, Caesarion, in tow—and many Romans were offended when she erected her golden statue in the temple of Venus Genetrix. Cleopatra was forced to flee Rome after Caesar was stabbed to death in the Roman senate in 44 BC, but by then she had already made her mark on the city. Her exotic pearl hair and jewelry became a fashion trend, and according to historian Joann Fletcher, "so many Roman women adopted the 'Cleopatra look' that their statues were often mistaken for Cleopatra herself"

She had a hand in the deaths of three of his siblings.

Power struggles and assassination plots were as much a Ptolemaic tradition as family marriages, and Cleopatra and her siblings were no different. Her first brother and husband, Ptolemy XIII, expelled her from Egypt after she tried to take the throne, and the couple later faced off in the civil war. Cleopatra regained the upper hand by teaming up with Julius Caesar, and Ptolemy drowned in the Nile after being defeated in battle. After the war, Cleopatra remarried her younger brother Ptolemy XIV, but she is believed to have killed him in an attempt to make her son a co-ruler.

In 41 BC, he also orchestrated the execution of his sister, Arsinoe, whom he considered a rival to the throne.

Cleopatra is a smart person.

Cleopatra believed herself to be a living goddess, and she often used ingenious stage arts to seduce potential allies and strengthen her divine status. A famous example of his dramatic talent came in 48 BC when Julius Caesar arrived in Alexandria during his feud with his brother Ptolemy XIII. Knowing Ptolemy's troops would thwart his attempts to meet the Roman general, Cleopatra herself wrapped herself in a carpet—some sources say it was a linen sack—and smuggled it into her private room. Caesar was mesmerized by the sight of the young queen in her royal attire, and the two soon became allies and lovers. Cleopatra then used a bit of similar theater in 41 BC. met Mark Antony. When summoned to meet the Roman Triumvir in Tarsus, he is said to have arrived at a golden barge decorated with purple sails and rowed with oars made of silver. Cleopatra had been dressed to look like the goddess Aphrodite, and she sat under a gilded canopy while maids dressed as cupids fanned her and burned fragrant incense. Antony—who considered himself the embodiment of the Greek god Dionysus—was instantly fascinated.

Cleopatra's beauty is not her greatest asset.

Roman propaganda painted Cleopatra as a seducer who used her sex appeal as a political weapon, but she was perhaps more famous for her wit than her looks. He spoke as many as a dozen languages and was educated in mathematics, philosophy, speech, and astronomy, and Egyptian sources later describe him as a ruler "who raised the rank of scholar and enjoyed their company." There is also evidence that Cleopatra was not as physically conspicuous as previously believed.

Coins with his portrait show him with manly features and a large hooked nose, although some historians argue that he deliberately portrayed himself as masculine as a display of strength. For his part, the ancient writer Plutarch claimed that Cleopatra's beauty "was utterly incomparable," and it was precisely her melodious voice and "irresistible charm" that made her so desirable.

Cleopatra and Mark Antony formed their own drinking club.

Cleopatra first began her legendary love affair with the Roman general Mark Antony in 41 BC. Their relationship had a political component — Cleopatra needed Antony to protect her crown and defend Egypt's independence, while Antony needed access to Egypt's wealth and resources — but they were also known to love each other's company. According to ancient sources, they spent the winter 41-40 BC. lead a laid-back and over-the-top life in Egypt, and even formed their own drinking society known as

“Inimitable Livers.”

The group engages in evening parties and wine parties, and its members occasionally take part in elaborate games and contests. One of Antony and Cleopatra's favorite activities is said to be roaming the streets of Alexandria in disguise and pranking its residents.

Cleopatra is not Egyptian

Although Cleopatra was born in Egypt, she traces her family roots to Greek Macedonian and Ptolemy I Soter, one of Alexander the Great's generals. Ptolemy took over the government of Egypt after Alexander's death in 323 BC, and he founded a dynasty of Greek-speaking rulers that lasted nearly three centuries. Although not ethnically Egyptian, Cleopatra adhered to many of the ancient customs of her country and was the first member of the Ptolemaic line to study Egyptian. The languages that Cleopatra spoke, apart from Greek, Egyptian, and Latin, reflected her desire to reclaim areas of Africa. North and West Asia were once part of the territory of the Ptolemaic Kingdom.

Cleopatra may not have died from an “asp” bite

 

Cleopatra and Antony are known to have committed suicide in 30 BC after Octavian's forces chased them into Alexandria. While Antony is said to have brutally stabbed himself in the stomach, Cleopatra's method of suicide is less certain. Legend has it that he died deliberately letting “asp” bite him—most likely a poisonous snake or Egyptian cobra—to bite his arm, but the ancient chronicler Plutarch admits that “what really happened is unknown to anyone.” He said Cleopatra was also known to hide a deadly poison in one of her hair combs, and historian Strabo notes that she may have applied the fatal "salve." With this in mind, many scholars now suspect he used a safety pin dipped in some form of strong poison—snake venom or something.