Cleopatra VII was the last pharaoh of ancient Egypt, reigning from 51-30 BCE. She was the daughter of Ptolemy XII and Cleopatra V, and succeeded her father as queen upon his death. Cleopatra was famous for her political and military acumen, as well as her charm and beauty. She was also a skilled diplomat, forming alliances with powerful leaders such as Julius Caesar and Mark Antony.

One of Cleopatra’s most famous accomplishments was her alliance with Julius Caesar. The two met in 48 BCE and began a romantic relationship that would have significant political consequences. Cleopatra bore Caesar a son, Caesarion, and used her connections with him to help secure Egypt’s independence from Rome. However, Caesar’s assassination in 44 BCE led to a power struggle between Cleopatra and Mark Antony, who had also been involved with her.

Cleopatra’s relationship with Mark Antony was equally significant. The two formed an alliance in 41 BCE, and Antony declared war on Rome in 32 BCE. The resulting Battle of Actium was a crushing defeat for Antony and Cleopatra, and they were forced to flee to Egypt. However, they were eventually captured by the Romans and Cleopatra committed suicide, marking the end of the Ptolemaic dynasty and ancient Egypt as a political entity.

Photograph of an ancient Roman marble sculpture of Cleopatra VII's head as displayed at the Altes Museum in Berlin


Cleopatra’s legacy is complex and multi-faceted. She was both a powerful leader and a skilled manipulator, using her charm and intelligence to achieve her goals. She also played a significant role in the political and cultural landscape of the ancient world. And her alliances with powerful leaders like Julius Caesar and Mark Antony had far-reaching consequences. Despite her many accomplishments, Cleopatra’s legacy has been somewhat controversial. With some portraying her as a seductress and others as a powerful and intelligent leader.