CLEOPATRA was the Egyptian pharaoh queen famed for her captivating beauty and strong involvement in Roman politics.
She was also known for her romantic liaisons with both Julius Caesar and Mark Antony.
How did Cleopatra die?
Cleopatra VII was born in early 69 BC and died on August 30 BC aged 39.
Mystery shrouds the Egyptian queen's death with many hypothesising it was due to suicide.
According to some, Cleopatra killed herself by allowing an Egyptian cobra to bite her after the death of her husband and the Roman general Mark Antony.
Some Roman-era scholars argued that she had in fact introduced the snake’s poison either using it as an ointment or via a sharp implement.
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Others argue Cleopatra’s death was caused by murder supposedly from political rival Octavian.
Upon her death, Egypt became a province of the Roman Empire marking it the beginning of Roman Egypt.
Where was Cleopatra's tomb?
To this day, Cleopatra’s tomb remains undiscovered alongside all other Ptolemaic ruler’s tombs.
Some archaeologists speculate her remains could lie below Taposiris Magna – an ancient city located in the northern coast of Egypt which largely remains submerged.
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Cleopatra and Mark Antony were buried together.
Who was Cleopatra?
Cleopatra was the daughter of King Ptolemy XII Auletes and Cleopatra V.
The Egyptian throne was passed to the-then 18-year-old Cleopatra following her father’s death making her the dominant ruler alongside her brother.
In order to keep Roman support in Egypt and maintain her throne, Cleopatra began an affair with Julius Caesar until his murder in 44 BC.
Following Caesar's death, Mark Antony became Rome's new ruler and later Cleopatra's lover.
The pair had an 11-year affair and had three children together.
Unfortunately it was an ill-fated alliance and after the defeat at the Battle of Actium, the lovers retreated and later both died.
What did Cleopatra look like?
As with most of Cleopatra’s life and story, her appearance remains a mystery.
Cassius Dio, a Romanian historian described Cleopatra as “a woman of surpassing beauty” yet a 2000-year-old silver coin depicting the Egyptian queen tells a different story.
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Studied by experts at Newcastle University, the image of Cleopatra shows a pointed nose, thin lips and a slack chin.
Regardless of Cleopatra’s depiction there is no denying she remains one of the most fascinating women of history.
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