New PDF release: Cleopatra: A Biography (Women in Antiquity)

By Duane W. Roller

ISBN-10: 0195365534

ISBN-13: 9780195365535

Few personalities from classical antiquity are extra famous--yet extra poorly understood--than Cleopatra VII, queen of Egypt. during this significant biography, Duane curler unearths that Cleopatra was once actually a discovered and visionary chief whose overarching objective used to be constantly the maintenance of her dynasty and country.
Roller's authoritative account is the 1st to be dependent exclusively on basic fabrics from the Greco-Roman interval: literary assets, Egyptian records (Cleopatra's personal writings), and representations in artwork and coinage produced whereas she was once alive. His compelling portrait of the queen illuminates her prowess as a royal administrator who controlled a wide and numerous nation extending from Asia Minor to the inner of Egypt, as a naval commander who led her personal fleet in conflict, and as a pupil and supporter of the humanities. Even her amorous affairs with Julius Caesar and Marcus Antonius--the resource of her recognition as a ideal seductress who drove males to their doom--were rigorously crafted country guidelines: she selected those companions to insure the procreation of successors who will be important of her distinctive dynasty. That Cleopatra eventually misplaced to her Roman competitors, curler contends, not at all diminishes her abilities.

"Roller tells his story easily and accessibly....The ensuing portrait is that of a posh, many-sided determine, a powerful Hellenistic ruler who may well stream the tillers of energy as skillfully as any guy, and one some distance and nobly faraway from the 'constructed icon' of renowned imagination."
--The long island occasions publication Review

"A wealthy account of overdue Ptolemaic culture."
--The New Yorker

"Offers a great landscape of the society and tradition of past due Ptolemaic Egypt, with shiny sketches of the (remarkably full of life) highbrow lifetime of Cleopatra's Alexandria and the structural instabilities of the past due Ptolemaic state."
--Times Literary Supplement

"Besides delivering a compelling tale and respiring clean air right into a heretofore two-dimensional cartoon from historical past, Roller's 'Cleopatra' presents an engaging remark at the attitudes nonetheless regularly occurring in the direction of ladies who rule."
--Christian technology Monitor

"Compulsively readable."
--Bookslut

"A definitive account of a queen of outstanding strength."
--Publishers Weekly

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Additional info for Cleopatra: A Biography (Women in Antiquity)

Sample text

Ptolemy II became the earliest major king to seek alliance with the city. 44 He was still contending with his half-brother Magas in Cyrene, whose territory adjoined that of Carthage. Although Ptolemy had friendly relations with that city, it might have seemed wise to have as many alliances as possible in the western Mediterranean. 45 Both Ptolemy II and Magas died during the war, and after it ended the Romans sent an embassy to Alexandria to acquaint themselves with the new ruler, Ptolemy III. 46 What the early Ptolemies could not know, however, was that Rome would steadily grow in power and acquire territory closer and closer to Egypt.

C. Berenike eventually supplanted Eurydike as his wife28 and became the mother of not only Ptolemy II but his sister-wife Arsinoë II. From its very beginning, the Ptolemaic dynasty was known for its complex family relationships. , arrangements had already been made for Ptolemy II to succeed him, ensuring that the Ptolemaic Empire would be a hereditary dynasty. The father was in his eighties and was one of the last surviving who had known Alexander; the son was in his mid-twenties. Allegedly, he had been regent for two years, although there is some evidence that this was a fabrication created in the succession struggle that erupted,29 which essentially pitted Eurydike’s children against Berenike’s.

But the king seriously weakened his standing in the city when his assassins disposed of an embassy sent from Alexandria to speak against him. The leader of the embassy, the philosopher Dion, survived and was summoned to the Senate, but Ptolemy, through the agency of Pompeius, was able to keep him from speaking and eventually had him killed. 38 Portents were also being used by both sides. A thunderbolt struck the statue of Jupiter in the Alban hills, followed by a conveniently produced Sibylline oracle—promulgated by Cato—that enjoined the Romans to offer friendship but no military assistance.

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Cleopatra: A Biography (Women in Antiquity) by Duane W. Roller


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