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Books - History - Europe - Macedonia - Egyptologica: Pharaohs: Cleopatra

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Cleopatra: The Life and Loves of the World's Most Powerful Woman
by Elizabeth Benchley
Paperback (December, 2002)
list price: $21.95 -- our price: $14.93
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Isbn: 9654941457
Sales Rank: 517370
Subjects:  1. Ancient - Egypt    2. Ancient Art    3. Ancient Egypt - History    4. Biography / Autobiography    5. Historical - General    6. History    7. History: World    8. Women    9. Politics   


$14.93

Cleopatra (Penguin Classic Biography S.)
by ErnleBradford
Paperback (03 July, 2001)
list price: $16.00 -- our price: $16.00
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Isbn: 014139014X
Sales Rank: 729309
Subjects:  1. 332-30 B.C    2. Ancient - Egypt    3. Biography    4. Biography / Autobiography    5. Cleopatra,    6. Egypt    7. Historical - General    8. History    9. History: World    10. Queen of Egypt,    11. Queens    12. d. 30 B.C    13. African history: BCE to c 500 CE    14. Ancient Egypt    15. Biography & Autobiography / General    16. Biography: historical    17. Biography: royalty    18. Cleopatra   


$16.00

Cleopatra: Beyond the Myth
by Michel Chauveau, David Lorton
Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Hardcover (01 February, 2002)
list price: $29.95 -- our price: $29.95
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Reviews (4)

2-0 out of 5 stars Could Cleopatra Have Changed the World?
Cleopatra might have changed the world.

Instead, as this rather deficient biography indicates, she did little other than to be remembered in history as one of the world's most intriguing and yet little known women.She became a legend, similar to King Arthur and Camelot, perhaps because history and biography tends to be written about winners rather than losers.

On the first page of the introduction, Chauveau admits "We do not in fact have any ancient account of her reign, not even a simple biographical summary!"It makes a rather difficult to write anything relevant about her, especially "beyond the myth" as this book claims to offer, when so little is known about her actual life.

Unfortunately, it's more of a pedestrian account of a formative stage in the Roman Empire than an analysis of what Cleopatra might have achieved.This is a woman, in the words of the historian Dio Cassius but absent from this book, "captivated the two greatest Romans of her day, and because of the third she destroyed herself."

Chauveau asserts, "From the purely historical point of view, Cleopatra is thus but an empty figure without an existence of her own, the privileged but ever subordinate partner in the lives of her contemporaries."

Okay.At the time of Julius Caesar, Egypt was still independent.Alexandria, the capital, was the largest, richest, and most prestigious city of that time.Suppose Cleopatra had succeeded in shifting the center of Roman power to Alexandria?The result might well have been an eastern-based empire instead of the eventual Euro-centric empire of Rome;think of the impact of Christianity had the Popes been based in Alexandria instead of Rome.

Cleopatra, by herself, almost made it happen.As it was, the Gnostic brand of Christianity flourished briefly in Egypt and the Near East.Had Egypt, or the Near East, been the heart of Christianity there might have been no Islamic religion;instead, a new religion may have arisen in the West.

This is "an empty figure without an existence of her own"?

Cleopatra may well have been the last sigfnificant challenge to the hegemony of Rome.Our history is based on what the Romans allowed to survive, not on the achievements of rivals and rebels such as Cleopatra in Egypt and Boudicca in England.Surely, a biography of Cleopatra should recognize her as a woman who almost changed the world.For some reason, the book doesn't even include her portrait from a bas relief in the Temple of Hathor, Dandarah, Egypt.

Instead, this book stumbles along without seeming to recognize that Cleopatra came as close as anyone in thousands of years in changing the history of the world.

2-0 out of 5 stars Could Cleopatra Have Changed the World?
Cleopatra might have changed the world.

Instead, as this rather deficient biography indicates, she did little other than to be remembered in history as one of the world's most intriguing and yet little known women.She became a legend, similar to King Arthur and Camelot, perhaps because history and biography tends to be written about winners rather than losers.

On the first page of the introduction, Chauveau admits "We do not in fact have any ancient account of her reign, not even a simple biographical summary!"It makes a rather difficult to write anything relevant about her, especially "beyond the myth" as this book claims to offer, when so little is known about her actual life.

Unfortunately, it's more of a pedestrian account of a formative stage in the Roman Empire than an analysis of what Cleopatra might have achieved.This is a woman, in the words of the historian Dio Cassius but absent from this book, "captivated the two greatest Romans of her day, and because of the third she destroyed herself."

Chauveau asserts, "From the purely historical point of view, Cleopatra is thus but an empty figure without an existence of her own, the privileged but ever subordinate partner in the lives of her contemporaries."

Okay.At the time of Julius Caesar, Egypt was still independent.Alexandria, the capital, was the largest, richest, and most prestigious city of that time.Suppose Cleopatra had succeeded in shifting the center of Roman power to Alexandria?The result might well have been an eastern-based empire instead of the eventual Euro-centric empire of Rome;think of the impact of Christianity had the Popes been based in Alexandria instead of Rome.

Cleopatra, by herself, almost made it happen.As it was, the Gnostic brand of Christianity flourished briefly in Egypt and the Near East.Had Egypt, or the Near East, been the heart of Christianity there might have been no Islamic religion;instead, a new religion may have arisen in the West.

This is "an empty figure without an existence of her own"?

Cleopatra may well have been the last sigfnificant challenge to the hegemony of Rome.Our history is based on what the Romans allowed to survive, not on the achievements of rivals and rebels such as Cleopatra in Egypt and Boudicca in England.Surely, a biography of Cleopatra should recognize her as a woman who almost changed the world.For some reason, the book doesn't even include her portrait from a bas relief in the Temple of Hathor, Dandarah, Egypt.

Instead, this book stumbles along without seeming to recognize that Cleopatra came as close as anyone in thousands of years in changing the history of the world.

3-0 out of 5 stars Strange Biases
This book purports to bust open the myths that have perpetuated without much evidence. What it does instead is offer its own theories on Cleopatra with just as little, or even less evidence, and those theories show more than a hint of anti-feminist rhetoric.

The information held in the book is interesting, and it certainly did lead me to other sources that I might find helpful, but conclusions are drawn that truly make me roll my eyes. For example, as evidence for the fact that Cleopatra did not die by snakebite, the author asks the rhetorical question summarized here: 'Are we to believe she would choose such a painful way to die just for the sake of preserving her myth for posterity?'

I almost laughed aloud. How anyone studying Cleopatra would think this mistress of self-propaganda would not choose, on the eve of her death, to preserve her memory for history is beyond me. This is a woman who was an ardent worshipper of Isis whose very symbol was a snake, and a woman who always wore a symbolic headdress with a cobra on it. Maybe she didn't die by snakebite, but -if- she could have smuggled a snake in to bite her, there is little doubt that she would have used it.

He then uses her suicide as evidence that Octavian must have wanted her to dead (in spite of historical evidence to the contrary).The author must deny her both the strength of character to die "painfully" (if we accept that snakebite is more painful than other poisons), the intelligence to do so against Octavian's wishes.

Later in the book, he states that Cleopatra's daughter was fortunate to marry Juba of Numidia, making her Queen of Mauretania. Closer examination of the facts would have revealed that it was Juba who was fortunate to have married Cleopatra's daughter (Cleopatra Selene). Cleopatra's daughter held Mauretania as a kingdom in her own right as sole ruler, while Juba's kingdom of Numidia was desolate, and ultimately abandoned by him so that he might become King Consort to Selene.

These kinds of subtle manifestations of the author's urgent need to minimize the worth of these ancient women makes the reader have to second guess everything presented in the book. That's unfortunate, because it's simply written and a nicely condensed commentary on her life. ... Read more

Isbn: 0801438675
Sales Rank: 869983
Subjects:  1. Ancient - Egypt    2. Biography    3. Biography & Autobiography    4. Biography / Autobiography    5. Biography/Autobiography    6. Cleopatra,    7. Egypt    8. Historical - General    9. Queen of Egypt,    10. Queens    11. Women    12. d. 30 B.C   


$29.95

The Search for Cleopatra
by Michael Foss
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Hardcover (01 April, 1998)
list price: $24.95
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Editorial Review

Egypt's legendary queen (69-30 B.C.) comes to vibrant life in this colorful, readable biography. Historian Michael Foss combines careful scholarship with exciting storytelling to capture Cleopatra's complex personality within the context of the turbulent world-power politics of her day. Cunning, ruthless, nervy, unquenchably feminine yet imperiously regal, Cleopatra made her own rules. Foss illuminates the statesmanship that gained Ptolemaic Egypt some measure of status and independence in the shadow of all-powerful Rome, as well as the sexual allure that captivated Julius Caesar and Marc Antony. The Search for Cleopatra is both good history and good fun. ... Read more

Reviews (15)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Power and the Glory
I like the author's philosphy of history: in the first chapter of "The Search for Cleopatra," Foss writes that our picture of the past "is not some absolute of historical truth founded on a mountain of small certain facts."Rather, history "reveals itself in drama, passion, elemental conflict, emblematic events that become the basis for mythologies."

Cleopatra was a fascinating character, a myth in life and death.She was more brilliant than beautiful, a consummate politican and a ruthless leader.She was the mistress of the two most powerful Roman leaders of her era, partly because she wanted her Ptolemaic dynasty to survive and partly because she seems to have been genuinely devoted to her two lovers.

The "Search for Cleopatra" is not a biography as such.Rather, it tells the story of a pivotal time in which Cleopatra played a central role.Foss sketches all of the major protagonists--Julius Caesar, Marc Antony, Octavian and a host of lesser characters--against the background of the Roman civil wars and Cleopatra's skilled but ultimately unsuccessful attempt to come out on top in a very high stakes game.

Was Cleopatra a cruel, calculating woman, a person who did not hesitate to execute her younger brother and sister in order to rule unchallenged?Or was she a loving mother, concerned about the welfare of her children and genuinely in love with Julius Caesar and Marc Antony?As with any complex character, the answer may be "both," and this well-written book does an excellent job of making a powerful woman and a dangerous time a bit more understandable to the modern reader.

If you are interested in the life and times of Cleopatra, you might also want to pick up "Alexandria: City of the Western Mind" by Theodore Vrettos.Vrettos devotes a substantial part of his book to telling the story of Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra, but he also describes how Alexandria transmitted Greek culture to the modern world.Another interesting view of the subject is "Not by a Nose," an essay by Josiah Ober in "What If? 2," which ponders how the world might have been different if Antony and Cleopatra had defeated Octavian at the Battle of Actium.

5-0 out of 5 stars Feminine Wiles; Oriental Guile
Whether or not Cleopatra would qualify as "black" by contemporary definitions (and unless we magically got a DNA sample, that possibility simply can't be ruled out, given the limited information about her antedecents), we can be sure of two things:first, that she was vilified as have most other powerful women throughout the ages; second, that she was despised by the Romans as representing an alien, "Oriental" culture.Foss writes well, and by judicious use of the limited source material he re-tells the epic tale of the Queen of the Nile.The main elements (Caesar, Antony, asp, etc.) are thanks to Shakespeare, famous; less well-known are the tortured politics of Hellenistic Egypt.Cleopatra's family, the Ptolemys (the Macedonian dynasty which inherited the pharoah's throne from Alexander the Great) would satisfy any modern definition of "dysfunctional."With their unique blend of habitual incest, infidelity, profligacy, fratricide, patricide, matricide and perennial regicide, it took a political genius just to survive in the Ptolemy family, and Foss infers from Cleopatra's relative longevity that she was just such a genius.Provided you can get your head around relationships like "wife-mother" and "uncle-husband," this is a great yarn.

4-0 out of 5 stars Why Do You Care?
Why do you care if Cleopatra was African or Caucasian or mixed? Does it matter? You should not be thinking about the colour of her skin, more about the things she accomplished in her life! I look at the reviews above, and all I see is raving controversy instead of reviews (I am not a hypocrite...) I found this book to be extremely interesting, and insightful into the life of a great queen. Anyone who is interested in the Queen of the Nile should take a moment to read this. ... Read more

Isbn: 1559704225
Subjects:  1. 332-30 B.C    2. Ancient - Egypt    3. Ancient Egypt - History    4. Biography & Autobiography    5. Biography/Autobiography    6. Cleopatra,    7. Egypt    8. Historical - General    9. History    10. History - General History    11. Queen of Egypt    12. Queen of Egypt,    13. Royalty    14. Women    15. Women - Ancient History    16. d. 30 B.C    17. Cleopatra    18. History / General   


Cleopatra's Palace: In Search of a Legend
by Franck Goddio, Laura Foreman
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Hardcover (01 March, 1999)
list price: $35.00 -- our price: $22.05
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Editorial Review

Founded in the late 4th century B.C. by its namesake, the conquering Alexander of Macedon, the Egyptian city of Alexandria enjoyed a near-perfect site: "a flat and narrow limestone expanse at the edge of the Nile delta, some thirty miles west of the great river's westernmost branch" that stood before a superb deep-water harbor. The Ptolemaic dynasty that Alexander founded produced, three centuries later, Egypt's last true pharaoh, Cleopatra, who built on the site fabulous structures of marble, granite, precious gems and metals, and glasswork--a palace complex renowned throughout the ancient world. Cleopatra, writes Laura Foreman, was both "a hard-headed pragmatist and at the same time a devout mystic," a stern ruler whose position was constantly challenged by rivals to the throne and the ever-expanding Roman empire alike. Caught on the losing side in a power struggle between the Roman generals Octavian and Antony, Cleopatra committed suicide; with her death came the end of Ptolemaic power.

History did not forget her, but the elements (particularly the rising Mediterranean sea) swallowed up much of the ancient city of Alexandria. In the late 1980s, an international team of archaeologists began to excavate the underwater ruins of ancient Alexandria. Foreman documents their work in this richly illustrated, well-written reconstruction of the ancient past, a book that armchair Egyptologists will find irresistible. --Gregory McNamee ... Read more

Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Well Written
She is the most famous woman of antiquity and with the very mention of Ancient Egypt, one rapidly thinks of Cleopatra and her seductions of two powerful Roman leaders.

Though the book does include some magnificent photographs of Cleopatra's palace,the book itself is very well written. Many have been interested with the myths of Cleopatra such as her "magnificent" beauty. Her "magnificent" beauty was showcased in the film "Cleopatra" with Elizabeth Taylor. Foreman tells the story wonderfully and pictures are just an added bonus. The story itself seduces the reader with the controvery regarding Cleopatra and her romances with two of the greatest military leaders of antiquity. But Foreman goes deeper than Cleopatra's romances. She goes back to Alexander the Great and his conquest in Egypt. And while you are reading the book, your imagination does go wild with the descriptions of palaces and romances and conquests and wars. However, it is difficult to put the whole story together as there are still many gaps missing and much of what is known of Cleopatra is found in fictional literature such as Shakespeare's for example. Though his plays do portray a beautiful Cleopatra, historians do argue her beauty was far from actual beauty. Historians say whatever she lacked in looks she made up in a fascinating personality and a dangerous intelligence only she possessed, but a personality and mind that Julius Caesar was seduced by and mostly in part that he was considered to be highly intelligent also. On part of Mark Antony, though he had great power, did not have the mind that Caesar did. Nonetheless, Cleopatra loved Antony. Though many by now know the story of Cleopatra, it still is a fascinating story to learn about. And what one does not know of the Egyptian queen, people can't help but wonder of her sexuality and her whole life in general.

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Pictures
I think this was a great book. I learned alot about Cleopatra and the pharoahs of her time. The roman pictures she appears in do not show her in as attractive a light as her Egyptian drawings do. But, I don't think anyone can say for sure what she really looked like. I am sure she must have been a beauty nonetheless. The text is quite easy to read, and the pictures are spectacular. Good Choice!

5-0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Wonderful!
I loved this book. This is truly great reading. This book was so fascinating, I stayed up all night just to finish it. We are taken beyond mere history, and into the depths of the Roman rulers lives.

The author does an excellent job of sweeping you into the vast Roman Empire that had reined supreme for many years. From Alexander the Great, to the his successors of Ptolemys', Cleopatras' and Berenices', we take a brief but intimate look into their lives. The morally corrupt family that they were, reining high for many generations over this strange and exotic land.

Interesting as it is, Cleopatra was not actually Egyptian. Although depicted in many ancient drawings as a pharaoh, she was actually of Roman-Greek descent. Her rein to the throne was given to her through succession and birth.

Facts do not always play a key role in this book, as information is not always on hand. The author tends to insert information from her own imagination when she sees fit to do so. I had no problem with this, as she makes it clear that those are her own suppositions. This book reads out like a good fiction novel.

Towards the end of the book, we travel with the teams who made some of this research possible. There are many beautiful pictures throughout. This makes a great coffee table book. I think this is a great addition to any library, and for anyone to sit down and enjoy! ... Read more

Isbn: 0679462600
Subjects:  1. Alexandria    2. Ancient - Egypt    3. Ancient Egypt - History    4. Ancient Egypt Archaeology    5. Archaeology    6. Cleopatra,    7. Egypt    8. History    9. History - General History    10. Middle East - Egypt    11. Queen of Egypt,    12. Social Science    13. Sociology    14. Underwater archaeology    15. Underwater exploration    16. d. 30 B.C   


$22.05

Cleopatra
by Michael Grant
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Paperback (October, 2000)
list price: $24.76 -- our price: $19.95
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Reviews (7)

4-0 out of 5 stars Ancient spin meisters
I'm not a classicist as some of the other reviewers on this site appear to be, but as a layperson I can say that this book was pretty interesting.There are some boring parts, as others noted, but what biography does not have some boring parts?Here's what I found especially interesting:

Grant gives readers a good idea about how most of the chronicles he consulted were written from one perspective or another and thus tended to be sentimentally biased in one direction or another.Grant points out significantly that as "Westerners" we have clung most closely to the "Occidental" version of matters, rather than anything leaning toward the other side, the "Orient."He points out consistently how ancient writers who disliked Cleopatra changed facts around to disparage her, while the opposite was true of those who liked her.

The point being, it seems, that you have to take your history with a grain of salt (just as we do the news from the various modern media).Some reviewers seem to feel that Grant himself is slightly biased, in Cleopatra's favor, but as long as we're aware of it, we can perhaps discern the bias and read other viewpoints to get a well-rounded sense of what actually occurred.

The other interesting point was how many people, mostly men presumably, died during these ancient wars.And how little their deaths accounted for anything.In other words, life was a lot cheaper then than today.In Cleopatra's time, only the top dogs had the sense of individual rights that most of us have today.Is that progress?

Grant's book, of course, is thoroughly documented for those wishing to do further investigation.

Diximus.

3-0 out of 5 stars Pretty Dry
It's the splashiest period of all ancient history... a near Jerry Springer opera of lust, betrayal, and tawdry affairs.And yet, Michael Grant makes it about as dull as he possibly can.

He presents a very factual and well-researched account, though I take exception to several of his assertions and theories, including the one where he asserts that Octavian wanted Cleopatra to commit suicide because he was afraid the Romans would want to free her as they did her sister Arsinoe.Arsinoe was just one random Egyptian princess who defied Julius Caesar.Cleopatra was the occidental temptress who had ensnared and ruined two of Rome's best men.She was probably the most vilified and hated of all Rome's enemies in history, for with Cleopatra, it was intensely personal.The very idea that the bloodthirsty Romans would have a sudden sentimental streak towards her is pretty laughable.

But on the whole, his theories are soundly researched and well justified, even when I disagree with them.The book has some lovely portraits and a more in depth examination of Cleopatra's forebearers than is usually presented in her biographies.Moreover, he has an excellent perspective on the supposed 'inevitability' of Cleopatra's loss, and how the world may well have been different had things gone another way.

It's a reasonable and scholarly work that makes a fine addition to my collection.If you're looking for something to move you, you may prefer Margaret George's "The Memoirs of Cleopatra".

4-0 out of 5 stars Probably the best biography on Cleo
Cleopatra is a fascinating figure... renowned as a patron of arts and learning, a gifted linguist, and a canny politicians, she is too often remembered as a sex kitten.Grant cuts thru the myths, pro- and anti propaganda to deliver what is probably the best biography on Cleopatra.Writen by one of the marquee lights of classical history, the book is written in academic style, although for the most part it is highly readable.To be honest, I found the first preliminary chapters to be somewhat slow going, but once the story begins it takes off like a grand soap opera.Not as splashy as some other works on the great queen, this is *the* place to go for a detailed, comprehensive look at Cleopatra. ... Read more

Isbn: 184212031X
Sales Rank: 685638
Subjects:  1. 332-30 B.C.    2. Ancient - Egypt    3. Biography    4. Biography / Autobiography    5. Cleopatra,    6. Egypt    7. Historical - General    8. History    9. History: World    10. Queen of Egypt,    11. Queens    12. Royalty    13. Women    14. d. 30 B.C    15. African history: BCE to c 500 CE    16. Ancient Egypt    17. Biography: historical    18. Biography: royalty    19. Cleopatra   


$19.95

Cleopatra (Sutton Pocket Biographies)
by E.E. Rice
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Paperback (25 June, 1999)
list price: $9.95 -- our price: $8.95
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Reviews (4)

3-0 out of 5 stars interesting book, for young adults
This book is a biographical account of famous Cleopatra VII, the last Macedonian ruler of Egypt. It provides descriptive details about her family, her lovers and her importance in Egyptian history. Illustrated with 12 black and white pictures and 3 maps, it is a highly readable work, accessible to the general public, yet most valuable for young adults.

5-0 out of 5 stars A fine job
I want to write a quick review here and offer a contrary opinion to that of the reader from Dearborn Heights (below) who found this book"scetchy" and "iratic" and apparently not helpful atall on a junior high term paper. Having read virtually all of the"Pocket Biography" series from Sutton, including this one, I findthem to be consistently excellent. They do not advertise themselves ascomprehensive. A nice big clue about that is the fact that they're usuallyno more than about 120 pages and cost less than ten bucks. If you want agreat book for a plane flight,you might consider one of them, but if youwant massive detail about a life, you'll need to look elsewhere.

5-0 out of 5 stars A fine job
I want to write a quick review here and offer a contrary opinion to that of the reader from Dearborn Heights (below) who found this book"scetchy" and "iratic" and apparently not helpful atall on a junior high term paper. Having read virtually all of the"Pocket Biography" series from Sutton, including this one, I findthem to be consistently excellent. They do not advertise themselves ascomprehensive. A nice big clue about that is the fact that they're usuallyno more than about 120 pages and cost less than ten bucks. If you want agreat book for a plane flight,you might consider one of them, but if youwant massive detail about a life, you'll need to look elsewhere. ... Read more

Isbn: 0750920572
Sales Rank: 845448
Subjects:  1. Ancient - Egypt    2. Ancient Egypt - History    3. Biography & Autobiography    4. Biography / Autobiography    5. Biography/Autobiography    6. Historical - General    7. Royalty    8. Women    9. Biography & Autobiography / General   


$8.95

Cleopatra of Egypt: From History to Myth.
by Susan Walker, Peter Higgs
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Hardcover (14 May, 2001)
list price: $65.00 -- our price: $40.95
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great resource for Cleopatra
If pressed, I'd almost say that this is the single best book on Cleopatra.Granted, there are critical biographies, historical accounts, and all sorts of other sources, but this massive book is unique in that it shows nearly every sculpture, coin, or papyrus that can be tied directly to Egypt's last independent ruler.Its fascinating to finally see how Cleopatra presented herself to her subjects -- in traditional Egyptian style for the local population, in Greek style to the Greco-Roman world at large.It's also sobering to see how little remains of her reign.The Romans went after her Greek-style statues, but since they didn't understand Egyptian art, many works of art in that style survive.Besides the impressive visuals, the book includes important essays on many different parts of Cleopatra's reign, life in Alexandria, and the legends that have swirled around Cleopatra after her death. A good comprehensive look at this famous queen, scholarly and readable.But boy, those visuals...! ... Read more

Isbn: 0691088357
Sales Rank: 383478
Subjects:  1. 332-30 B.C.    2. Ancient - Egypt    3. Art    4. Art & Art Instruction    5. Biography    6. Cleopatra,    7. Collections, Catalogs, Exhibitions - Museum    8. Egypt    9. Exhibitions    10. History    11. History - Ancient & Classical    12. History - General    13. Queen of Egypt,    14. Queens    15. d. 30 B.C    16. d. 30 B.C.    17. Archaeology and Ancient History    18. Art / History / General    19. Art and Architecture   


$40.95

The Last Queens of Egypt
by Sally-Ann Ashton
Hardcover (02 June, 2003)
list price: $21.95 -- our price: $14.93
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Isbn: 0582772109
Sales Rank: 1017868
Subjects:  1. Ancient - Egypt    2. Ancient Egypt - History    3. Historical - General    4. History    5. History - General History    6. History: World    7. Middle East - Egypt    8. Women    9. Women's Studies - History    10. History / General   


$14.93

Hellenistic Queens: A Study of Woman Power in MacEdonia, Seleucid, Syria, and Ptolemaic Egypt
by Grace Harriet MacUrdy
Paperback (01 June, 1932)
list price: $20.00 -- our price: $20.00
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Isbn: 0890055424
Sales Rank: 1137185
Subjects:  1. Ancient - Egypt    2. History - General History   


$20.00

The Life and Times of Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt : A Study in the Origin of the Roman Empire
by Arthur Edward Pearse Brome Weigall
Hardcover (30 September, 1968)
list price: $48.50 -- our price: $48.50
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Isbn: 0837102618
Sales Rank: 1538841
Subjects:  1. 332-30 B.C    2. Ancient - Egypt    3. Biography/Autobiography    4. Caesar, Julius    5. Cleopatra,    6. Egypt    7. History    8. History - General History    9. Queen of Egypt,    10. Relations with women    11. d. 30 B.C   


$48.50

Cleopatra
by Michael Grant, Runer Nelson
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Audio Cassette (01 November, 1999)
list price: $78.00
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Reviews (7)

4-0 out of 5 stars Ancient spin meisters
I'm not a classicist as some of the other reviewers on this site appear to be, but as a layperson I can say that this book was pretty interesting.There are some boring parts, as others noted, but what biography does not have some boring parts?Here's what I found especially interesting:

Grant gives readers a good idea about how most of the chronicles he consulted were written from one perspective or another and thus tended to be sentimentally biased in one direction or another.Grant points out significantly that as "Westerners" we have clung most closely to the "Occidental" version of matters, rather than anything leaning toward the other side, the "Orient."He points out consistently how ancient writers who disliked Cleopatra changed facts around to disparage her, while the opposite was true of those who liked her.

The point being, it seems, that you have to take your history with a grain of salt (just as we do the news from the various modern media).Some reviewers seem to feel that Grant himself is slightly biased, in Cleopatra's favor, but as long as we're aware of it, we can perhaps discern the bias and read other viewpoints to get a well-rounded sense of what actually occurred.

The other interesting point was how many people, mostly men presumably, died during these ancient wars.And how little their deaths accounted for anything.In other words, life was a lot cheaper then than today.In Cleopatra's time, only the top dogs had the sense of individual rights that most of us have today.Is that progress?

Grant's book, of course, is thoroughly documented for those wishing to do further investigation.

Diximus.

3-0 out of 5 stars Pretty Dry
It's the splashiest period of all ancient history... a near Jerry Springer opera of lust, betrayal, and tawdry affairs.And yet, Michael Grant makes it about as dull as he possibly can.

He presents a very factual and well-researched account, though I take exception to several of his assertions and theories, including the one where he asserts that Octavian wanted Cleopatra to commit suicide because he was afraid the Romans would want to free her as they did her sister Arsinoe.Arsinoe was just one random Egyptian princess who defied Julius Caesar.Cleopatra was the occidental temptress who had ensnared and ruined two of Rome's best men.She was probably the most vilified and hated of all Rome's enemies in history, for with Cleopatra, it was intensely personal.The very idea that the bloodthirsty Romans would have a sudden sentimental streak towards her is pretty laughable.

But on the whole, his theories are soundly researched and well justified, even when I disagree with them.The book has some lovely portraits and a more in depth examination of Cleopatra's forebearers than is usually presented in her biographies.Moreover, he has an excellent perspective on the supposed 'inevitability' of Cleopatra's loss, and how the world may well have been different had things gone another way.

It's a reasonable and scholarly work that makes a fine addition to my collection.If you're looking for something to move you, you may prefer Margaret George's "The Memoirs of Cleopatra".

4-0 out of 5 stars Probably the best biography on Cleo
Cleopatra is a fascinating figure... renowned as a patron of arts and learning, a gifted linguist, and a canny politicians, she is too often remembered as a sex kitten.Grant cuts thru the myths, pro- and anti propaganda to deliver what is probably the best biography on Cleopatra.Writen by one of the marquee lights of classical history, the book is written in academic style, although for the most part it is highly readable.To be honest, I found the first preliminary chapters to be somewhat slow going, but once the story begins it takes off like a grand soap opera.Not as splashy as some other works on the great queen, this is *the* place to go for a detailed, comprehensive look at Cleopatra. ... Read more

Isbn: 0788703528
Sales Rank: 2407994
Subjects:  1. Audio Adult: Books On Tape    2. Biography & Autobiography    3. Historical - General    4. Royalty   


Cleopatra
by H. Rider Haggard, William Sutherland
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Audio Cassette (01 May, 2000)
list price: $56.95 -- our price: $56.95
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars She gets what she wants... but what does she want?
Rider Haggard's Cleopatra tells the story of the legendary queen as shown through the eyes of Harmachis, an Egyptian physician and priest of Isis.It is written from the point of view of Harmacis at the end of his life.He is old and recounts his life story.Like so many others he was obsessed with the beautiful Cleopatra, and so he tells her story as much as his.

Unlike most admirers, Harmachis actually gets involved with Cleopatra.She pushes him to reveal secrets of Isis (including the location of hidden treasures of the pyramids) to further her political ends.Throughout the story, the reader is left wondering whether Cleopatra really does love Harmachis.Sometimes she seems only to use him and she does betray him every time.But one has to consider that Harmachis comes from low class parents, so actually ending up with him might not be an option for her.She seems to really love him and maybe she really is trying to arrange things for them.Her power over him is complete, possibly because she doesn't know what she wants.

The setting and story are lavish.After all, this is ancient Egypt, complete with hidden treasures of Isis. At the same time the story is about more timeless issues - love and betrayal and love vs religion.It has the right blend of action, emotion and awesome settings to keep me interested all the way through.And the ancient setting keeps Cleopatra from feeling dated, as do some of Haggard's other novels.

I highly recommend Cleopatra to anyone into 1890's stuff, Egyptian stuff or adventure novels.I have no idea why indypublish is charging almost 100 dollars for this book.It is in public domain now, so what's the deal?Anyway this seems to be where they used copies are and its definitely worth 10 dollars.I read it about 8 years ago and I still remember it clearly and go wow. ... Read more

Isbn: 0786116242
Sales Rank: 2981890
Subjects:  1. Ancient - Egypt    2. Audio - Nonfiction (Unabridged)    3. Audio Adult: Books On Tape    4. Fiction    5. Historical - General   


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