"Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt" by Howard David Johnson

  Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt ( 69-30 B.C.) descended from Ptolemy, one of generals of Alexander the Great was heralded as the greatest of all beauties and is arguably the most legendary femme fatale in all the annals of history in competition with the beauteous Helen of Troy.

  At the age of seventeen, she became Queen of Egypt ruling jointly with her younger brother Ptolemy V by marriage, according to the ancient Egyptian custom of the Pharaohs.

  After he betrayed her and stripped her of all power and authority, she withdrew to Syria, and prepared to recover her rights by force of arms. Her opportunity came when Julius Caesar followed Pompey into Egypt. The personal fascinations of Cleopatra induced Caesar to undertake a war on her behalf, in which Ptolemy lost his life. She regained her throne through a marriage to her younger brother whom she rid herself of with poison. She lived openly as Caesar's mistress until his assassination in Rome. Their association had been terribly unpopular, and she became aware of her unpopularity and returned to Egypt.

  Subsequently Cleopatra became ally and mistress to Mark Antony (Antonius ). Enter Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian ( 63 B.C.- 14 A.D.) who was the adopted son of Julius Caesar. He declared war on the star crossed lovers and defeated them at Actium. After a secret conference, she accepted the victor's proposal that she poison Antony, her lover, and "for Egypt" she set out to seduce this newest Roman Commander, Octavian...

  She lured Antony to a mausoleum where he committed suicide himself in the mistaken idea she had already done so. Octavian refused to yield to the charms of Cleopatra, who, according to tradition, put an end to her own life by applying an asp to her bosom. Octavian went on to realize their unfulfilled ambitions and became Caesar Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome and founder of the Imperial Roman Government.

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