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Cleopatra VII Thea Philopator: Cleopatra’s Role In Egypt Essay

Cleopatra VII Thea Philopator (pronounced folopitor) was the last pharaoh in the Ptolemy line (pronounced Polemy) There were many other rulers before her in her family but she is the one that everyone remembers. Cleopatra was not actually Egyptian she was from a Greek family and was the only one in her family to show an interest in learning the Egyptian language. What was cleopatra’s role in Egypt? Cleopatra the VII (7) became the Queen of Egypt at the age of only eighteen. She was married to her brother Ptolemy (pronounced Polemy) XIII (13), who was eight years younger than Cleopatra.

The newly wed couple ruled an empire that included Egypt, Cyprus and parts of Libya. Cleopatra’s family had ruled for more than 100 years before she was born in 69 B. C. Were there other rulers besides Cleopatra VII if so who? There were many other rulers in the Ptolemy family before Cleopatra VII. There were her parents for one thing and then her grandparents before her parents. Refer to the family tree below. A Lot of Cleopatra’s family co-ruled with each other Cleopatra’s family interbred with each other meaning sisters married brothers nieces married uncles so the family always ruled somehow.

There were many rulers before the rulers on the family tree but there are more than 100 years worth of rulers in her family. FAMILY OF CLEOPATRA AND RULERS BEFORE HER Red lines = Marriage Blue lines = Children How many years did Cleopatra rule for and when did she stop? Cleopatra VII was born in 69 B. C. in Alexandria. Cleopatra’s father Ptolemy XII (12) died and in his will he left the kingdom in the hands of Cleopatra and her younger brother Ptolemy XIII (13). Cleopatra was only eighteen when she took her joint claim to the throne.

She had to wed her brother and co-rule due to Egyptian law, which called for any female ruler to have a consort who was either a brother or a son. Ptolemy XIII was only twelve years of age at the time and Cleopatra took full advantage of the age difference between her and her sibling and the situation they had been thrown into. Cleopatra dropped Ptolemy’s name from all administrative documents ignoring her brother’s role of co-regent for three years. Cleopatra ruled alone until one of her brothers advisors Pothinus began plotting against her.

In 48 B. C. they removed Cleopatra from her power and she was forced into exile in Syria along with her younger sister Arsinoe IV (4). Cleopatra would not give up her place on the throne easily and she began forming an army. Cleopatra made plans to meet Julius Caesar in her own time, seeking an alliance, and a return to the throne. She had herself wrapped inside a rolled up rug which was sneaked into Alexandria and delivered to Caesar. When the rug was opened, Caesar was immediately charmed.

Soon after Cleopatra was married to Caesar and became his lover, but more importantly she had linked herself to the Roman Empire. Caesar returned Cleopatra to her throne, and she then married her youngest brother Ptolemy XIV (14) who was only the age of eleven at the time. Soon after Cleopatra became pregnant with a son of Caesars and gave birth. His name was Ptolemy XV (15) whom some called Little Caesar. In 44 B. C. , Caesar was murdered by being stabbed to death at a senate gathering. After this tragedy, Cleopatra fled back to Egypt.

In 42 B. C. Cleopatra met Mark Antony, now in control of the Roman Empire. Once again Cleopatra would use her charm and cunning personality to link herself with a powerful man who was part of a powerful empire. Their relationship rapidly turned romantic and Antony would spend winter with Cleopatra at Alexandria. Outraged by Antony’s new affair outside of marriage, The Roman senate declared war on Egypt. Antony and Cleopatra’s forces put together were no match against the Romans and they were soon defeated. Antony committed suicide soon after by stabbing himself and Cleopatra died soon after by being bitten by an asp.

An Egyptian cobra. She was only thirty nine years old when her time of death came and was buried beside Antony. What is Cleopatra famous for? Cleopatra is famous for her beauty, charm, will-power and marrying the leader of Rome. There is also a great love story between Cleopatra and Mark Antony. Cleopatra was one of the great romantic rulers of all time. She was the last of the Ptolemies to rule. Her whole life was a huge struggle for power in which she skillfully used her natural beauty, charm and intelligence.

In 48 B. C. Cleopatra was forced out of power and led with her only remaining sister Arsinoe. At the same time Rome was in civil war between Caesar and Pompey. Pompey sought refuge in Egypt. By the orders of fifteen year old Ptolemy, Pompey the Great, a Roman statesman was beheaded in front of his children and wife. When Caesar arrived in Egypt two days later, Ptolemy presented him with Pompey’s severed head. While Pompey was Caesar’s enemy Caesar became enraged and Cleopatra saw the opportunity to strike and used his anger against Ptolemy. Caesar was quite impressed by Cleopatra’s intelligence and undeniable beauty.

Caesar then helped Cleopatra become the sole ruler of Egypt. From this point on they became lovers. After Caesar was assassinated Cleopatra met and began an affair with Mark Antony. Joining forces Cleopatra and Mark Antony went to war with Octavian twice. During the second war Antony was informed Cleopatra had died an upset Antony then committed suicide by stabbing himself. It has become one of the great love stories of all time. Cleopatra played a very important role in Egypt, but her life was also a big struggle for power over people and the throne.

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