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Cleopatra VII

". . . her beauty was not of itself absolutely without parallel, not the kind to astonish those who saw her; but her presence exerted an inevitable fascination . . . ."

opat-PLUTARCH DESCRIBING CLEOPATRA

In 48 bce, Queen Cleopatra VII, Philopator of Egypt, was seriously down on her luck. Her father Ptolemy VII had died three years earlier. The River Nile, which Egyptians depended on to water crops, had failed to flood, causing famine throughout Egypt. The royal coffers were empty after years of overspending. (Keeping pet elephants with gold slippers will do that.) And, oh, her brother was trying to kill her.

Her Macedonian (Greek) family, the Ptolemies (pronounced tall-lom-mees), had ruled
Egypt for nearly three hundred years. Before his death, her father had decreed that his eighteen-year-old daughter, Cleopatra VII, and her ten-year-old brother, Ptolemy VIII, would rule Egypt together. Her brother had other ideas. He had no intention of sharing his crown. No, it would be far easier to get rid of big sis and rule alone. Read More>>

 

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