Cleopatra-A-Life

Over the years there have been plenty of adaptions and interpretations of Cleopatra’s life. There are a lot of mixed opinions over who she was and what she did. 

She was a the queen of Egypt, a single female ruler in the ancient world, but you know what else? She did it while also being a single mom! 

Left to right: Alexander Helios (Antony’s*), Ptolmy Philadelpus (Antony’s**), Cleopatra, Caesarion (Ceasar’s***), Cleopatra Selene (Antony’s),

I have no idea if Cleopatra was a good or very involved mother, but I wanted to portray another way to look at Cleopatra’s life. None of their stories ended very well and I also just wanted to portray one picture of a semi-happy family. 

(Sorry if the clothing is off, I chose some generic outfits that were a mixture of Roman and Egyptian fashions.)

* I have no idea what he looks like because no images of him remain. I made his appearance by mixing his parents’ appearances. 
** I couldn’t get the dates right on this one, Ptolmy was three or so when his parents got married but I think Antony was living with Cleopatra around the time he was born. He’s pictured as being 1 in this picture.
*** Actually served as Co-ruler with his mother in his teen/preteen years. Apparently he looked a lot like his father.

I will have no satisfaction in this life until I have ankha living in my town so I can stare at her on a daily basis

she has a tattoo on her back  wanna fight about it

f. scott fitzgerald's "descriptions of girls" (from the notebooks)

472. She was not more than eighteen—a dark little beauty with the fine crystal gloss over her that, in brunettes, takes the place of a blond’s bright glow.
475. She was a stalk of ripe corn, but bound not as cereals are but as a rare first edition, with all the binder’s art. She was lovely and expensive, and about nineteen.
477. An exquisite, romanticized little ballerina.
492. She was the girl from foreign places; she was so asleep that you could see the dream of those places in the faint lift of her forehead. He struck the inevitable creaky strip and promptly the map of wonderland written on the surface of women’s eyebrows creased into invisibility.
495. She was small with a springy walk that would have been aggressive if it had been less dainty.
506. Wearing a kimono bright with big blue moons, she sat up among the pillows drawing her lips by a hand-glass.
507. He had thought of her once as a bubble and had told her about it, an iridescent soap-blown bubble with a thin delicate film over all the colors of the rainbow. He had stopped abruptly at that point but he was conscious too of the sun panning gold from the clear brooks of her hair, of her tawny skin—hell! He had to to stop thinking of such things.
508. She was eighteen with such a skin as the Italian painters of the decadence used for corner angels, and all the wishing in the world glistening on her grey eyes.
520. A girl who could send tear-stained telegrams.
523. Sat a gold-and-ivory little beauty with dark eyes and a moving childish smile that was like all the lost youth in the world.
526. Standing at the gate with that faint glow behind her, Dinah was herself the garden’s last outpost, its most representative flower.
527. Lola Shisbe had never wrecked a railroad in her life. But she was just sixteen and you had only to look at her to know that her destructive period was going to begin any day now.
530. Passing within the radius of the girl’s perfume.
531. Then for a moment they faded into the sweet darkness so deep that they were darker than the darkness, so that for awhile they were darker than the black trees—then so dark that when she tried to look up at him she could but look at the wild waves of the universe over his shoulder and say, “Yes, I guess I love you too.”
535. Long white gloves dripping from her forearms.
546. Always a glisten of cold cream under her eyes, of wet rouge on her lips.
549. She felt nice and cool after a dip in the lake, felt her pink dress where it touched her, frothy as pink soda water, all fresh in the new wind. When Roger appeared, she would make him sorry for his haughtiness of the last twenty-four hours.
553. Frances Strah looks like a trinket.
560. The sunlight dodged down to her hair thought bright red maple and bronze encorepus leaves that bent down low to say to the young men: See, we are nothing beside her cheeks, her russet hair.
561. One of those girls who straighten your necktie to show that in her lay the spirit of the eternal mother.
564. Anything added to beauty has to be paid for, that is, the qualities that pass as substitutes can be liabilities when added to beauty itself.
574. Josephine’s lovely face with its expression of just having led the children from a burning orphan asylum did the rest.
578. It was a harvest night, bright enough to read by. Josephine sat on the veranda steps listening to the tossing of sleepless birds, the rattle of a last dish in the kitchen, the sad siren of the Chicago-Milwaukee train.
580. Their hearts had in some way touched across two feet of Paris sunlight.
596. He smoothed down her plain brown hair, knowing for the thousandth time that she had none of the world’s dark magic for him, and that he couldn’t live without her for six consecutive hours.
597. Her childish beauty was wistful and sad about being so rich and sixteen.
599. Basil’s heart went bobbing off around the ballroom in a pink silk dress.

A commanding woman versed in politics, diplomacy, and governance; fluent in nine languages; silver-tongued and charismatic, Cleopatra nonetheless seems the joint creation of Roman propagandists and Hollywood directors. She is left to put a vintage label on something we have always known existed: potent female sexuality. And her timing was lousy. Not only was her history written by her enemies, but it was her misfortune to have been on everyone’s minds just as Latin poetry came into its own. She survives literarily in a language hostile to her.
—   Stacy Schiff: Cleopatra: A Life

currently reading: Cleopatra - A Life by Stacy Schiff
enjoying it a lot so far. i’m pretty familiar with the historical aspects of this era but Schiff brings in really interesting perspectives to see this period through. favorite element so far is how she talks about Cleopatra’s completely incestuous and dysfunctional lineage…HBO needs to make a damn show about the Ptolemies already. and from a scientific point of view, how does someone as smart and as accomplished (total understatements, btw) like Cleopatra VII come out of all that inbreeding and trauma? boggles the mind.