Queen Cleopatra is known as one of the greatest seductresses ever. While books and films of her great seductive powers are in existence, she was more than that to the Egyptians and the ancient world:
- Cleopatra was born in Alexandria, Egypt to the Macedonian Greek dynasty in 69BC and was a descendant of its founder, Ptolemy I Soter. It is often argued that she shared Persian ancestry. This is because the Ptolemies were forbidden to marry Egyptians at her time.
- Under the tutelage of Philostratus, she was well versed in the Greek art of oration, philosophy and medicine. During her adult years, she would go on to become a naval commander.
- After her father Ptolemy XII’s death in 51BC, she became a co-ruler with her brother, Ptolemy XIII, but had a disagreement which led to a civil war.
- She was quick to learn languages and had in her vocabulary Ethiopian, Troglodyte, Hebrew, Aramaic, Arabic, Syriac, Median, Parthian, Latin and Koine Greek. She is credited as the first ruler with a different heritage to learn the Egyptian language.
- She possessed some manly features but her wit, charm and intellect made her more attractive. So witty was she that she was rolled out of a carpet when she appeared before Julius Caeser the Great.
- Her romantic relationship with Caesar produced a son, Caesarion (Ptolemy XV). However, Caeser refused to acknowledge him until his death.
- Cleopatra became intimate with Antony and would go on to have three children for him: Alexander Helios, Cleopatra Selene II, and Ptolemy Philadelphus.
- She allegedly committed suicide on this day in 30 BC after she was bitten by an asp at the age of 39. After her death, Egypt found itself under the Roman Empire.