Saturday, December 20, 2008

What Did Cleopatra Look Like?

There has been a lot of press coverage this week, because of a Channel Five documentary [UK only here] that claims Cleopatra VII of Egypt did not look like Elizabeth Taylor.

So far, I can agree.

I'll even confirm that Richard Burton was not the spitting image of Mark Anthony.

But ... the Five PR offensive claimed that Elizabeth Taylor's Cleopatra 'nowhere near reality'
[The Telegraph]
and THIS is the 'real' face of Cleopatra:
"Using images from ancient artefacts including a ring dating from Cleopatra's reign 2,000 years ago, Cambridge University's Sally Ann Ashton has pieced together an entirely different image that shows her as a mixed race beauty."

Sally Ann and I were in the same year as undergrads, and she's very sweet. She wrote her dissertation on Ptolemaic Portraiture, volunteered at the British Museum, etc. She had a hand in the BM's traveling exhibition Cleopatra of Egypt: From History to Myth. That's where the problems start ... Much of the exhibition, I was told by curators at the BM, was based on re-attributions by Sally Ann in her dissertation. And most scholars I chatted with did not accept any of those re-attributions .... they preferred to keep images of Arsinoe II as Arsinoe II, etc. Clearly there are people out there who agree with Sally Ann, but I guess I didn't get to speak to them.

So let's start with the obvious issue with the image Sally Ann has come up with - the woman is African or mixed race. If Sally Ann had done her research, she would have known that Cleopatra was a member of the Ptolemaic Dynasty, descended from Ptolemy I Soter. Ptolemy was a general of Alexander the Great and Macedonian - so Caucasian. His mother was Arsinoe - who started as a concubine of Philip II (father of Alexander), then married Lagus when pregnant; either could be the father.

The Ptolemies sometimes inter-married with other Hellenistic dynasties descended from Alexander's generals, such as the Syrian Seleucids, but tended to prefer to marry each other. It is sometimes unclear which child was born from which wife, but they were all Ptolemies. So please do not be mislead by academic discussions about which woman was Cleopatra VII's grand-mother - she might not be certain, but we are certain that she was a Ptolemaic princess or queen, not an 'Egyptian'. Also 'Egyptian' seems to be 'code' for 'black' - but ... Egypt is north of the Sahara, and most people black enough to have produce someone of this kind of mixed race lived south of the Sahara. Neither modern nor ancient Egyptians are or were black Africans. I have no clear evidence of racial sensibilities amongst the Ptolemies, and they might well have made a marriage with a suitable sub-Saharan princess, had she been important enough, but this alliance would have been both important and unusual enough to have been preserved in an ancient source.

I'm not saying that Cleopatra was a blue-eyed blonde, but she wasn't black or mixed race either.

So what did Cleopatra look like?

We can't be sure, as there are, even leaving aside Sally Ann's re-attributions, three different types of images of Cleopatra. For now we should set aside the images in the Egyptian tradition of Cleopatra as Pharaoh or as Isis. The remaining portraits can be divided into Greek style and Roman style images.

There are many uncertain or debated images, but coins she issued can be reliably claimed to have official images of Cleopatra.

The first coin is 'prettier' Greek style, with a smaller nose. [source] The second coin, issued with Mark Anthony, is Roman style, more 'warts and all' with a larger nose - this might have reflected reality or been the fashion of the times. [source] In both she has a strong chin, and the main difference is the nose - sculptures are not much help with this question, as the nose tends to be the first thing that breaks off (the first on statues of women, anyway) ...
























Then the hair .... I set to work finding a sculpture with hair like Sally Ann's 'Cleo' and this is the best I could do.

This sculpture is a Roman copy of a Pergamene original, so the Hellenistic original would have had hair that Cleo as a Hellenistic queen might have had ... except that hair was often changed by copyists. And on the coins she is not depicted with this sort of hair style ... [source]

I think what Sally was aiming for in her reconstruction is a style called 'Melon' because the hair is divided into sections and looks like a melon ... [see here for a brief history of hairstyles].

This hairstyle is closer to the one depicted on the coins, particularly the Greek style coins. Since Cleopatra was a queen, she is shown on the coins wearing a diadem over her hair to indicate her status (that's the thick ribbon, which would have been either fabric or of gold like a tiara).


[source and source]


Once we've taken away the corn rows, and added a big hook nose, Cleopatra looks a lot less mixed race ... So, sorry Sally Ann, but that thing is not the real face of Cleopatra.

We can go through many more of the images assigned to Cleopatra another time.

The face reminded me of someone, so I went through my images of the various Hellenistic queens, and then it struck me ... the 'new reconstruction' of a mixed-race Cleopatra looks a bit like Sally Ann! [far left of photo - source]

87 comments:

Devildog said...

I couldn't agree more. Very well laid out facts that dispell the black Cleopatra myth.

Anonymous said...

Here we go again everyone in history has to be white for white people to feel better. Do you feel better now?

Anonymous said...

It has nothing to do with making anyone "feel better" instead it has to do with historical accuracy. Do YOU feel better now, idiot?

Anonymous said...

June 26 must have been opposite day.

Anonymous said...

Why do the PC people always throw up a bogus claim, and if you disagree with them you are automatically a racist? The Ptolemys only interbred with other Ptolemys, and were Greek, not Egyptian or any other ethnic group. Cleopatra was Greek, get over it.

Anonymous said...

cleopatra was not black nor was she white she most def not as white as liz taylor she was a caramel complex and greek or egyptian she was never a "white girl".

Anonymous said...

What the hell is a "caramel complex"? She was Greek, which is considered caucasian. No matter how hard you wish it so, she wasn't black, caramel or butterscotch.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your article. I'm not certain why there is a need to portray Cleopatra in a way that is most certainly false. No, she did not look like Elizabeth Taylor, but she didn't look like Nefertiti. Cleopatra was Greek, and if you ask someone what race Greek people are, they would say Caucasian. She may have had some African blood, but as you said, that would have been unusual. It also wouldn't have made her "black".

Cleopatra was Greek in style as well. She didn't wear pleated linen dresses, or braided wigs. Our pop-culture view of Cleopatra is wrong, though few people are willing to believe it for whatever reason.

Anonymous said...

i reckon she would have looked a bit like sofia copola

Anonymous said...

Who gives a flying crap? You people are stuck on one of the most stupid arguments ever!!!

Anonymous said...

Then go elsewhere if you don't want to read about it, in other words, grow up!

Anonymous said...

I'm posting as Anonymous but I'm a different person (just couldn't figure out how to do it otherwise).
At the risk of starting something again, "Greek" describes a pretty broad range of physical types. Macedonian Greeks are blond and blue-eyed, but Greeks from the island of Crete are dark-skinned, dark-eyed and have curly black hair (like the lovely ladies in the Minoan fresco at the palace at Knossos). Also, while technically the US Census Bureau makes me, a Greek-American, check off the "Caucasian" category on my form, I can tell you that nobody has ever mistaken me for a Caucasian. I usually get "Are you Latina?" or even "Are you mixed race?" So unless Cleopatra's ancestors very carefully bred only with blond and blue eyed Macedonians during their centuries in power in Egypt, it is entirely possible that she could have been brown-skinned and dark-haired. My question is why should any of this matter? Her importance in history is not as a blonde or a brunette, a Caucasian or an African, but rather as a shrewd and powerful ruler of a great empire.

Anonymous said...

To the poster from Crete. Yes, Cretans do not look like Danes and Danes do not look like Italians and northern Italians don't look like southern Italians and Macedonian Greeks don't look like Athenian Greeks. You do realize that not all Caucasians are white-skinned, blonde-haired and blue-eyed, right? We come in a range of colors from pinkish-white to olive brown.

Why does it matter? You can write a book about Cleopatra without picturing her, if you wish, but it would be pretty difficult to make a movie about her without showing her face. Therefore, accuracy is of some importance. It is also important to try and separate history from myth, although I suppose that that lofty ideal will never be entirely obtainable, because we ALL tend to see what we want in the past. And of course, the more remote and mysterious the era, the more we write our own desires upon it.

peterb said...

Contemporary sources describe Cleopatra as having dirty blonde (or auburn) hair and blue eyes. I'd hope that we could avoid people using this topic for race baiting in either direction and stick to the facts.

This link has some details on one other very different vision of Cleopatra

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/558247/what_did_cleopatra_really_look_like.html?cat=2

Anonymous said...

Based from a painting done by Gerome She had Egyptian & Greek features, with dark, curly rope like hair, Egyptian eyes and nose (also it was said that she had a "very" long nose - which is a known charasteristic of ancient Egyptians), tan color and the physique of an Egyptian. So, more or likely she was mixed. It's unfair to want to make her white instead of who she really was, she was too beautiful, intelligent & powerful for us to paint a picture of who we want her to be, instead of who she really was, i think she would have wanted the world to know exactly what she looked like.

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Anonymous said...

How could she be Greek if she is know to be the Queen of Eygpt? It is foolish to even recommend that she is not of Africa was she was a Queen of a country that was in Africa. Ummm...did they outsource Queens back then? I mean honestly - you people matter of factly write - isn't it obvious she was Greek. No. Not obvious when Ceasar and Marc Antony were in Eygpt which is in Africa. That's like saying the Queen of England is French. She is a decendent of many generations of Africa...period. Unless of couse after 100s of years and thick bloodlines you would have us to believe that the royal family of Egypt became bored one day...an "ah-ha" moment if you will - and thought. Hey...lets outsource our kingdom...go to Greece randomly pick some woman bring her to Egypt an crown her Cleopatra queen of the Nile by way of Greece. Did she have made in Hong Kong tattooed to the bottom of her foot. Upon my word my good people - do you not see how improbable this all sounds. Please...remember yourselves - at the least remember your good educations and your sense of reason.

Anonymous said...

How could she be Greek if she is knowm to be the Queen of Eygpt? It is foolish to even recommend that she is not of Africa when she was a Queen of a country that was in Africa. Ummm...did they outsource Queens back then? I mean honestly - you people matter of factly write - she was Greek. As matter of factly as one would say the sky is blue. No. Not obvious when Ceasar and Marc Antony were in Eygpt which is in Africa. That's like saying the Queen of England is French. She is a decendent of many generations of Africans...period. Unless of couse after 100s of years and thick bloodlines you would have us to believe that the royal family of Egypt became bored one day...an "ah-ha" moment if you will - and thought: Hey...lets outsource our kingdom...go to Greece randomly pick some woman bring her to Egypt an crown her Cleopatra Queen of the Nile (by way of Greece). Did she have made in Hong Kong tattooed to the bottom of her foot? Upon my word my good people - do you not see how improbable this all sounds. Please...remember yourselves - at the least remember your good educations and your sense of reason.

Anonymous said...

EGYPTIANS ARE BLACK. IT IS IN AFRICA. SO NOW WHITE PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO SAY THAT AFRICANS ARE WHITE? THAT MAKES NO SENSE. THE PERSON WHO WROTE THIS ARTICLE IS WHITE SO THEY WANT TO BELIEVE THAT CLEOPLATRA WAS WHITE. SHE WAS A WOMAN OF COLOR. SHE DID NOT HAVE WHITE SKIN OR CAUCASION HAIR. EGYPT IS IN AFRICA. AFRICA=BLACK! GET OVER IT. MY FRIEND ARMANI IS EGYPTIAN AND SHE CONSIDERS HERSELF BLACK.

Anonymous said...

Africans come in all kinds of shades of color, but they are still black. In America today we have black people who look different but they all still have African ancestry. White means European not Egyptian. Get that through your thick head. Just like white people try to say that Jesus was white when it is made clear that he had hair of wool like a black person and dark skin. Hair of wool is not hair like a white person and you cannot argue that. No one wants black people to have a great history. Instead, white people want to take credit for everything. Even when it deals with Africa. whites want to claim that too. They should only be allowed to claim Europe and thats it! Egypt is in Africa so stop claiming that white people. If you go to Egypt today, the people will tell you that they are black, not white!

Anonymous said...

Cleopatra did not have blond hair and blue eyes. She had black hair and almond shaped brown eyes just like black people. She also had a long nose just like plenty of black people. I say this because I am African American and I have a long nose, not wide, but people try to associate wide noses with black and thats not always true. People tell me that I look Egyptian all the time and I am black. I have caramel skin, almond shaped brown eyes, long black hair and high cheek bones. Black!

Jessica said...

Dorothy, the lady in the picture is a blond haired white woman. Of course she wants to believe that her people are the contributors to Africa. Well she is wrong. Go find your history in Europe, dont try to take Africa away from black people. Black people own Africa, all of it, so that includes Egypt. You white people own Europe. You can have that, but dont try to take our history away from us.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm.... no one is being racist here except the black people commenting. Bear in mind that this comment is written by someone who`s ancestors were slaves hunders of years before white man enslaved blacks. My ancestors were slaves for 700 years! And I`m a white person!
Im not a historian and I don`t have the knowledge neccessary to say whether Cleopatra was white or black but I am INTELLIGENT enough to understand that just because someone lived and was born in Africa, doesn`t mean they were black. Especially when e take what someone here said into account: Ptolemy I was not from Egypt but from Macedonia, AND the Ptolemic Dynasty used to breed inside their own circle - CONCLUSION: there is a high probability that Cleopatra was NOT black. But I doubt she wAS blond and blue-eyed, I think she was "tanned" or caramel/olive skinned as someone suggested. Can´t imagine living in Egypt and staying "white". But there is also a probability that she WAS black, assuming that some Ptolemy ignored the tradition and for some reason (personal or political) married an African.
Please leave your normative, ethical concernes about racism for other places. The facts of history are not concerned with them. We simply want to know what Cleopatra looked like - A FACT. It`s not the question of taking away somebody`s history or glory. If you would know some history,then you would know that Africa has plenty of BLACK KINGS AND QUEENS IN ITS HISTORY.

I am not pro-racsim or any kind of discrimination and I ask you to do the same. It`s a little lame to accuse someone in being racist just because they assume (probably rightly) that Cleopatra was not black.

Anonymous said...

"How could she be Greek if she is knowm to be the Queen of Eygpt? It is foolish to even recommend that she is not of Africa when she was a Queen of a country that was in Africa. Ummm...did they outsource Queens back then? I mean honestly - you people matter of factly write - she was Greek. As matter of factly as one would say the sky is blue. No. Not obvious when Ceasar and Marc Antony were in Eygpt which is in Africa."

If Caesar and Marc Antony were in Egypt, perhaps they were black too? No?

Read and learn history.

Anonymous said...

.........wow. Sooo I am Greek and African American, so i'm very into cultures and such. I am young, and still know you people are dumb for turning it into a white and black thing. Both can be ignorant, as I have found out by growing up very attatched to bothe sides of my family. Cleopatra was indeed a Greek who adopted Egyptian culture while in Egypt. Even so, back then Mediterranean countries were not yet considered whites. The climate was warmer, which means more natural tanning, and the whites had not mingled enough through that area. Egyptians, Greeks and even italians were darker back then. I know Carmel complexion Greek people&Italian people, and everyone know that egyptians were once part of parts of Africa just as Eskimos were one part of Asia , how American caucasians were great Britain and Humans were once monkeys, it's called adaption.
You people should wake up and adapt to our times. It's not about what color you turn out to be. Its about the soul that didn't have any choice. We are all equal you morons.

Peeeeace.


Oh and how about the oilspill or world war 3 cooking right about now......... anyone?

Anonymous said...

Oh and there was NO Europe. So suck it.

Annalyse said...

Dorothy, you are an idiot for calling Greeks caucasion. Kill yourself.

Natss said...

I'm a carmel Italian!! My grandparents all from Sicily. Mediterraneans weren't Caucasian until the waste of a euro came along. And Egyptians do have African roots, id say mixed with Greek or Persia. No way are any of those thing Caucasian, I am a woman of color that is pure sicilian NOT white. My grndpa would kill her for saying such, haha.

White people, whether Europe America or Canada like to think they are descendents from the great empires. Truth is they are not, everyone else is.

Trenton said...

Agreed. I believe cleopatras mum was Egyptian. Her dad was ofcourse Greek. It's ignorant people who don't know egyptians are of Africa. And it's the ignorant who still argue over whiteblack. It's people like you why the world is so terrible today. Open your eyes before you
open your mouth, for you might catch a fly of retardation to swallow and accept in yourself. We must progress as one race.

Kitty La La La said...

Just because someone is the Queen of an African country doesn't necessarily mean they are going to be "black". I agree with the anonymous person who wrote something a while ago, that the only people being racist are the "black people". It is possible to be racist against white people. And besides, this whole article was about what Cleopatra looked like, not whether or not the author was racist against black people. I think everyone is just being a bit stupid by saying she was being racist. Not all white people are racist, no matter what you may think. And anyway, just because someone lives in Europe, do they always look the same? I'm not saying Egyptians aren't dark-skinned, but not everyone in Africa looks exactly the same and maybe we should be focusing more on Cleopatra than the whereabouts of Egypt.

Clelia said...

You guys should stop being such idiots, white people can be descended from great empires, and how would you know that they aren't? Were you there when all those people were born? Did you witness these occasions? No, I don't think you did. If everyone would stop saying all white people are racist, maybe there would be a lot more peace in the world. I am Italian but I am most definitely white and I take great offence to the comments being made such as "White people, whether Europe America or Canada like to think they are descendents from the great empires. Truth is they are not, everyone else is." I am from Australia but am a mixed race of Italian, Maltese and English. Some of my aunties were born in Egypt, but that doesn't mean they are black. White people have made some great achievements to and just because there have been racist things done in the past, it DOES NOT MEAN everyone is racist now. Grow up and look at the world around you.

Annalyse is a biatch said...

Annalyse, get a life. Tell someone to commit suicide is a criminal offence and you should think about what you are saying. These things are called filters in your brain. They decide what you should say and what you shouldn't. Maybe stupid people don't have those.

Ann the bitch said...

Oh I don't have a filter in my brain. And it would only be a criminal offense if I helped her along the way. That is astupid fucking law anyways. You guys obviously don't know what you are talking about. No duh you are white chlamydia, you are from Australia correct and you are european yes? That wasn't my point. And personally I believe that the industrial revolution is ruining our world today, and what are the white men doing? Spreading their greed and ignorance to people who would have been great with out it.

Ps. Hicks shouldn't open their mouths.

Anonymous said...

Santa was black too...right...and elvis...and we cant forget Black Jesus...I have seen a velvet picture of it...so it's true!

DUMB!

Hatshepsut said...

Real Egyptians are few, unfortunately. As the offspring of one, I can attest that we are dark brown skinned. Made a slave-like group by the Macedonian conquerors, many real Egyptians escaped to other lands. I am a descendent of two of those. Our great female pharoah was and still is Hatshepsut, a strong, creative, productive leader until her natural death. Cleopatra, by Tsaligi legends, weighed 300 pounds, was blue-eyed with dark hair and a face and arms profuse with warts. Naturally, this discrpition is suspect, based, as it was, on hatred.

Alyssa said...

Wow..that's all I got to say! You ppl on here are crazy! It is what it is! Who cares what nationality she was? She's a part of all of our history! Nuff said!

Anonymous said...

I recently saw a documentary with plenty of evidence that suggest archaeologists have found the bones of Cleopatra's sister Arsinoe.
The programme said that the bones showed a young lady of African mix race, they also done a reconstruction of what she looked like and she was a very pretty young woman.
The historical evidence also suggests that Cleopatra and her sisters and brothers had the same mother, so if Arsinoe was of mix race so was her siblings.

Mary said...

Cleopatra looked like me. Get over it. Hook nose and all, but no warts. lol

(don't all you guys take this entry TOO seriously) gah

Bianca said...

When I read this, it felt as if the blogger were angry that Cleopatra would be portrayed in any color other than white. We are speaking of the ancient world after all. Is it possible that some of the Ptolomies had relations with some of the Egyptians and Nubians in their households which begat mixed race are darker offspring? Just askin'. I have read that the Egyptians were viewed as a lower class of people under the Ptolomies (by the Ptolomies) but having a child by another race doesn't seem like a stretch. I would think that all of the inbreeding would have produced some documentation on mental and physical retardation? If they didn't post that up, why would the let anyone know they also mixed coffee and cream? So, in closing, Cleo may have multiple ancestry and unless you were around in the BCs, you'll never know for certain.

Anonymous said...

Ok to all those above who argued that Cleopatra was of African decent just because she was Queen of Egypt I suggest they go check their history books.
She was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty of Ancient Egypt, and therefore was a descendant of one of Alexander the Great's generals who had seized control over Egypt after Alexander's death. Most Ptolemeis spoke Greek and refused to learn Egyptian, which is the reason that Greek as well as Egyptian languages were used on official court documents like the Rosetta Stone.[2] By contrast, Cleopatra learned Egyptian and represented herself as the reincarnation of an Egyptian Goddess.
They married their own siblings to keep the royal bllodline pure therefore going by historical fact there is very little chance that she would have the appearance of a black African. Her historical roots lay in Greece: The Ptolemaic dynasty, (Ancient Greek: Πτολεμαῖοι, sometimes also known as the Lagids, Ancient Greek: Λαγίδαι, from the name of Ptolemy I's father, Lagus) was a Greek[1][2][3][4] royal family which ruled the Ptolemaic Empire in Egypt during the Hellenistic period. Their rule lasted for 275 years, from 305 BC to 30 BC.
She ruled from Alexandria, a city named after Alexander the Great who conquered Egypt prior to the formation of the dynasty that ended with her death.

Anonymous said...

Really...history does say that she was descended from The Ptolomies
even though, to me, Greeks have some DARK blood in themfrom somewhere too). So I'd say she looked closer to Kim Kardashian. Definitely Caucasoid but not 'Lilly White" as 'Liz Taylor.

Thanks

Anonymous said...

It is like no one has ever heard of inter-country travel. I am dumbfounded at some of the assertions in the comments of this blog. It is very possible that some one living in Egypt had very 'white' colouring since many towns and villages on the southern coasts of the British Isles were raided by slave traders from Egypt and other African countries bordering the Mediterranean. And to that person asking about the queen of England being from France...actually her lineage is very much German. The noble families in Europe were/are very inbred.

And our fascination with Cleo's looks is due to our society's obsession with beauty and appearances. No one cares that she was a savvy and wily female leader.

Anonymous said...

*yawn* lame. stick to blogging.

Anonymous said...

The problem here is this...we all fail to realize that yes, people in all countries and on all continents come in an array of colors...But the clarity comes here, yes there are white Africans (also known as European African,) but most of them are of Dutch, German, Italian and other races; with that being said, yes they are African based on where they live,(Location) not because of their ancestry. So in the case of our Dear Cleo, just because she was the Queen of Eygpt, it does not automatically make her black, she arrived there after years of imbreeding and cross breeding...so once again, by Location she was considered Egyptian, but by lineage...she was European. And for those of you who are wondering if I'm another white person stating this...No I Am Not...I am black, I am black based on my skin color but not by lineage. The bottom line is this, no one...not then and definitely not now, is 100% anything...But to be honest, no one knows what she was or exactly what she looked like, besides Herself, family and those who were alive back then to see her firsthand. However, the one great thing about being a human, is that we all have imaginations, and we are all free to picture/imagine her as we'd like, whether or not you all(myself included) want to see her as white, black, Asian, Canadian, French or whatever...it's ok!

Victoria said...

This argument goes back to human nature. Don't football fans root for the home team? I know this is going to sound completely racist but I have to admit that when I'm watching some type of competition and I do not have a lot of information on the participants, I might go for the person who is closer to my ethnicity. Just like in boxing when an Italian supports the Italian boxer. Why is it wrong to want to have something in common with a smart, courageous woman like Cleopatra? If she was white...yay for Whites. If she was black...yay for Blacks.

Anonymous said...

idk if someone mentioned this already, but while yes, cleopatra was descended from the ptolemies, who were incestuous, they also had concubines and cleopatras father may have actually been born from his macedonian father and an african concubine. we'll probably never know exactly what she was.

Anonymous said...

it is very likely that cleopatra's mother had black lineage. we will never know for sure so it is curious that the side that refutes her as mixed race seem so dead set on their belief. the bigger question is why is it SO important for white people to have her white? it is almost an obsession. every blog on cleopatra is an ongoing whining fest about how tired white people are of her not being seen as a white woman. lol. it's like glen beck times 10. get over yourselves. why is it so important?

Anonymous said...

Yes, I hate to bring up Kim Kardashian in a discussion on an Egyptian queen but most likely that is the type we are probably looking at in figuring out Cleopatra's look. Recent findings found DNA info on her sister and it is confirmed her sister Arsinoe has a black mother. Now it could be that she and Arsinoe did not have the same mother but the point is Greeks and Africans were having children together, especially men of royal blood. We are looking at a 50/50 issue here. 50% chance she was not of a mother of color and 50% chance she was. The greater question is, why is it so darn important for white people? What is the fear in at least saying , there is a possibility that her mother was of color? It has not been entirely rejected by scientists.

Anonymous said...

Also having blonde hair and blue eyes does not dictate race. Vanessa Williams has blue eyes and blonde hair and both her parents are black. DNA is the key. The secret to Cleopatra might lie in the DNA of her sister Arsinoe whose mother was black. Anyway, we may never know. Who cares? Let's just say in that area of the world, people slept with people and things happened, ok?

Anonymous said...

I am mixed greek and african american. Well first of all why does it matter? She should be known for what she did not how she looked but in my personal opinion she was definately not pale skinned. Greece in in the medditeranian area. Egypt is in Norther africa most greeks are a tanned color so i dont get what everyone is arguing about. also who cares? Why do people try to make everything about race? There were plenty significant african kings and queens and european kings and queens and everything inbetween. People just stop arguing about it and get over it.

Anonymous said...

You're a fool if you think that the Saharan desert somehow was a barrier of transportation between the northern coast of Africa and the rest of the continent. There have always been very dark skinned people throughout Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Ethiopia and you have many VERY dark skinned people in Egypt who are still living there to this day. I recommend that those of who doubt this study works of Ivan Van Sertima, Chancellor Williams, and the African scholar Chiek Santa Diop. The only people to have ever come up with such false statements are Europeans and Whites in America. Now what sense does it make to study the works of scholars who have been brought up to think that their "race" (even though I feel that there's only one race of people) or people of their same skin complexion have been the only ones to make contributions to the world, which is utterly false. These are the same scholars who make no mention to the Moors who enlightened most of Europe when they were all living in caves and engaging in cannibalism. To the person who commented above me, that is why race matters. Because the whole premise of White Supremacy is built upon these very lies that are constantly circulated around academia. It shouldn't matter, but when societies are built upon lies someone has to set the record straight.

Also, many people claim that Africans all have or had big lips and larger noses. This is too false. You had and still have many Africans who had and have noses and lips of all sizes. I suggest that those of you who doubt this go to Africa and check it out for yourself. DNA is the best way to prove what someone looked like.

Anonymous said...

..........Also worth noting....not all of the Egyptian Dynasties were Black. The first ones most certainly were. The closer you get to the Birth of Christ the more you see the people of that region becoming lighter complexion and the darker individuals actually moving south, towards the Saharan Dessert. FYI the word "Saud" means black or dark.

crystal said...

Nubian Dynasties existed before Egyptian Dynasties. Egypt owes a lot to their Nubian ancestors. Look it up it is true.

anon1000 said...

I'm kicking myself in the ass for joining this stupid debate, but some people here seriously need a history lesson.

1) This debate over whether Cleopatra was "white" or "black" is ridiculous, period. Race as we understand it now (ie, white/black) did not exist in her time. It was created to justify slavery and developed over the past 400 years. Egyptians and Romans were aware of skin-color difference, but it had no attached meaning of inferiority/superiority, power/inequality, etc as it does today. Therefore, using Cleopatra's "race" to play out modern power/race struggles is ridiculous when put in historical context.

2) Logically the argument that modern day Greeks or modern day Egyptians look this way, so Cleopatra must look like this needs to be reexamined. In the past 2000 years just about every modern country/region has been conquered, reconquered, and subject to multiple diasporas. Greece is a great example, as it was until recently ruled by Ottoman Turks (who are a cultural and ethnic mixture of central Asian, Middle-Eastern, and Byzantine/European). Therefore the "look" of the ancient Greeks (or ancient Egyptians) can not be completely understood by looking at their modern counterparts.

3)Ancient Egypt was a melting pot (I hate that term, but can't think of a better one right now) as evident from Egyptian art which portrays people of skin colors ranging from light to very dark. Yes, the Ptolemies were Macedonian and the Ptolemies did tend towards incestious marriage with each other. However, that does not mean the Ptolemies married only Ptolemies. Cleopatra I (a great-grandmother of the Cleopatra we're discussing) was the daughter of a Seleucid (region encompassing Persia, Syria, and Anatolia) king.

4) I'm going to preface this by saying I'm speculating, but it seems that throughout tales of ancient history people are constantly having affairs. If Cleopatra was indeed a great beauty, I find it hard to believe that she was the product of generations of incestuous relations. More likely, (I believe) many of her queenly grandmothers probably sought "companionships" with Egyptian men who were not their brothers. Given that Egypt was a melting pot I think its very likely that Cleopatra was mixture of many backgrounds.

So to sum up, Cleopatra can't be "black" or "white" because those categories didn't exist in her time period. Groups and individuals should really stop trying to claim her for their own power struggles. Its unlikely that she was blonde haired and blue-eyed or that she was very dark-skinned given that she was atleast part Macedonian. I personally believe that she was (by modern standards) mixed but thats up to each person to decide because really there's no way of knowing, unless of course we find her (without a doubt) remains and test her (not her alleged sisters) DNA.

**Btw, to those people who have said such things like I'm not Caucasian because I'm Sicilian, Greek, etc keep in mind that "white" and "caucasian" are not synonyms. "White" is a social construct that refers to people who appear purely European (I say appear because white privilege has more to do with how others perceive you than how you perceive yourself). Caucasian as a racial definition has little to do with skin-color or hair-texture and more to do with things like disease-immunity and bone structure. Therefore if you are Sicilian, Greek, Turkish, Armenian, Israeli, etc you may not be considered "white" but you are still considered Caucasian. Personally, I believe in choosing your own identification, but be aware that how you choose to identify may not be how you are perceived by others.

Anonymous said...

The article mentioned that Acient Egyptians were not black......seriously? Man, that means what I studied in school is a bunch of lies? I think not. I know for sure that Ancient Egyptians were black. Lets talk about Nubia for instance, which was closely intertwined with Egypt. Those people were definitely black. Matter of fact they had a lot of influence on Ancient Egypt when it came to religion, costumes, and other things of that nature. I'm pretty sure they had influence on their pyramids and sphinxs as well. Its actually a known fact that there are definitely more pyramids in Nubia than in Egypt. And lets take a look at the sphinxs in Egypt. They were constructed during ancient times. They had the features of Blacks! Thats why their wide noses were knocked off to hide the fact that blacks could create something so great!
If you really want to get deep into this, the remains of a female were found in Africa, the oldest remains ever! They found mitochondrial eve that is present is all humans. So basically this is implying that all people come from a black woman? Hmmm, ponder on that one.
Listen, I'm not trying to make this a racial thing, but I do stand on the truth. We are all mixed if you really think about it. Theres no telling who are ancestors may have reproduced with! But I do know that if Cleopatra was not completely African, she had some black in her somewhere!

Anonymous said...

She was Greek anyone can look that up.... Cleopatra VII Philopator (in Greek, Κλεοπάτρα Φιλοπάτωρ; (Late 69 BC[1] – August 12, 30 BC) was an ancient Greek[2][3] queen and the last pharaoh of Ancient Egypt.

She was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, a Greek royal family which ruled Egypt.

Anonymous said...

I read that Her sisters remains were discovered in a tomb in the late 1920's. The skulls featured were identified with that of a "mixed race" women through measurements of the cranium. I assume this makes Cleopatra mixed race too? Idk what are your thoughts?

Anonymous said...

Cleo was never black, nor mixed race. She was greek and no wishing or dreaming will change that. Idiots with computers, makes you wonder, who turns it on for them.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness, the nerve of some of you people to argue a point without having any historical knowledge to back it up! The Ptolemies were Macedonian. They married within the family marrying their brothers and sisters. If Cleopatra was Macedonian AND her ancestors interbred with each other, then how pray tell, would she magically become black? She may have not been of the Aryan race, but she definitely was Caucasian. I'm not trying to take a racial standpoint here, but being of a rational nature, I like to accept the obvious facts presented to me and make sensible connections. Cleopatra was NEVER black, nor will she ever be. I'm terribly sorry, but no amount of wishful thinking will make her black.
Also, pulling the "black-people-went-through so-much-oppression" card isn't going to make anyone agree with you. Blacks have had just as many great influential people in history, just as every other race has.

Anonymous said...

To the 2 people who watched "Cleopatra: Portrait of a Killer" <-- (I watched it too.) that thing is so biased, it's not even funny. Not that the facts there are completely wrong, but it's totally sided, and they left out a bunch of stuff that could prove otherwise. I am doing my grade 11 english exam project on Cleopatra, so i've done loads of research on her. One of the things i found out, is there's not a lot that's known for sure about her. E.g. Death, Appearance, the number of languages she knew also varies from 6 to 10. Her mother is unknown, it is believed that arsinoe IV is her half sister. I've always imagined her to have had some egyptian blood snuck in her, so to be half and half, or 3 quarters macedonian and 1/4 Egyptian. But she's definitely not full egyptian like some are saying. Think of immigration. you move to somewhere in africa and you have some kids with another person of the same background as you. your kids are african, technically yes, but they're not black unless you yourself were.

darkpninja said...

Oy vey! Cleopatra was Greek everyone knows that. Yes, Daddy probably had lots of kids with women who were not related to him but those kids would not have made it to the throne. The line had to stay "pure". Cleopatra was married to her brother for crying out loud how much more proof do you need that they were really serious about keeping the bloodline in the family? And yes ancient Egyptians were black but by time Cleopatra came to the throne Egypt was no longer ruled by Egyptians it was ruled by GREEKS! Alexander the Great took care of that okay?

Anonymous said...

Well.... not so much Greek as Macedonian.

Anonymous said...

wow.. i think i just read a whole lot of bullsh*t.. this article is about what cleopatra looked like.. Yes there is a debate of what her blood line is but that is in the past leave it there. There is different shades and colors of all people. We are all related in some way from our ancestors in the past. Don't hurt yourselves by thinking too hard.. geez

Anonymous said...

Most people have wrote a lot of irrelevant things, but there are a few who know what they're talking about. For example, darkpninja is completely correct, although many kings had mistresses, the children of those women did NOT become heir to the throne, AT ALL! And yes, it is very true that her family and ancestors were extremely passionate about keeping the bloodline pure- she was indeed married to her younger brother for this sole purpose. That remains true to this day! People of a high status, "nobel" if you will, are expected to marry within that same status, from all over the world. Especially in her day, people were so picky about who was with who, that's why it was a big deal that both Julius and Mark were Cleo's lovers (because she wasn't roman). SHE WAS GREEK!!!

Another person posted this:

Ok to all those above who argued that Cleopatra was of African decent just because she was Queen of Egypt I suggest they go check their history books.
She was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty of Ancient Egypt, and therefore was a descendant of one of Alexander the Great's generals who had seized control over Egypt after Alexander's death. Most Ptolemeis spoke Greek and refused to learn Egyptian, which is the reason that Greek as well as Egyptian languages were used on official court documents like the Rosetta Stone.[2] By contrast, Cleopatra learned Egyptian and represented herself as the reincarnation of an Egyptian Goddess.
They married their own siblings to keep the royal bllodline pure therefore going by historical fact there is very little chance that she would have the appearance of a black African. Her historical roots lay in Greece: The Ptolemaic dynasty, (Ancient Greek: Πτολεμαῖοι, sometimes also known as the Lagids, Ancient Greek: Λαγίδαι, from the name of Ptolemy I's father, Lagus) was a Greek[1][2][3][4] royal family which ruled the Ptolemaic Empire in Egypt during the Hellenistic period. Their rule lasted for 275 years, from 305 BC to 30 BC.
She ruled from Alexandria, a city named after Alexander the Great who conquered Egypt prior to the formation of the dynasty that ended with her death.

^^^THIS IS VERY TRUE. She ruled over Alexandria (which is very close to Rome). Her roots are from Greece 100%. This does not mean she had a white skin tone, blonde hair and blue eyes (she most probably did not) Her skin was most definitely tanner than that of Europeans, and maybe it had a caramel tint to it. It is true that Cretan Greeks have a darker skin color, and when Alexander the Great took over, many of general were also from that area. This is where her lineage began. From Greece. So no, it is highly unlikely that she had a black skin tone and it is highly unlikely that she had a pale white skin tone. She must have been a light skinned caramel tone, and dark features (hair and eyes). Maybe that's one of the reasons she was appealing to Julius and Mark? (something different than what they were used to seeing). Anyway the truth remains that SHE WAS GREEK, and she LIVED in Egypt (was not of Egyptian/African decent). And no, I am not "white" at all, I am simply stating conclusions drawn from true historical references. Plus no one can say that just because it may be that her "sister" had a darker colored mother, that Cleo did as well. It could have easily been her half sister/3/4's sister/someone who was just REGARDED as a sister.

Anonymous said...

WOW! I cannot believe I drew myself into this debate. First of all there is NO historical documentation that successfully suggests what SKIN COLOR Cleopatra was.

First of all, Cleopatra died in 30BC. The world and structure on how ethnic groups were then are WILDLY different than how they appear in current society.

I don't think people understand there are clearly two different debates right now. The debate isn't what her nationality is (Egyptian)... Just like Blacks born in American are American. Just like Asians born in England are British. She lets get this correct. Her nationality is Egyptian. NOT GREEK. She was from EGYPT NOT GREECE.
Second, and the focus of the debate, her skin color.

Let’s use Lena Horne for example. We only really have some busted coins that show a side profile of Cleo. What if we only had a side profile of Lena Horne? She would appear (in society constructed norm) to be of Caucasian descent. However, Ms. Horne is of multiple races. Lena doesn't carry the stereotypical nose and facial features, and honestly, we would only know she was mixed because it is now common practice to document race (especially in America).

Let’s use Kitt Shapiro as an example as well. She is of African descent as well and appears to be Caucasian by appearance (long blonde hair, sharp pointy long nose), but very well has black blood inside of her (her son appears to be more Black than she does). Honestly, looking at her the last thing you would suggest is that she has any Nubian blood.

I state these facts and examples to back up anon1000. Back then, race was NOT in issue. I do also agree that social status was. There is a GREAT chance that Cleopatra is of black descent and may have not carried the stereotypical characteristics noticeable in facial features. No one here can argue that Cleopatra is white based soley on her nose, and that the Ptolemaic where SUPPOSED to all inbred. I bet a lot of the people, ESPECIALLY royalty, were still sleeping with their non-Ptolemaic slaves and concubines. Since no one knows all of Cleo's family's past no one can ideally attest that she is pure anything.

For example, my brother and I have the same exact parents but look nothing a lot. I have a very small nose that does not appear to be African, by sterotype, and he has a very large nose that accurately depicts that of Cleopatra's.

Therefore, one can really say that Cleopatra is pure Egyptian or white. There was a lot of race mixing back in the day. Since genetics differs from person to person she may have appeared white by modern day societys' standards, but by bloodline she was most likely very Egyptian.

Not only did Cleopatra VII learn the Egyptian language to communicate with the people she may have learned it because she REALLY was Egyptian by nationality AND bloodline.

We must consider that segregation by race was only recently invented in the last 500-400 years. This was not common practice back in the BC era. Also, it was normal for people to marry their brothers and sisters... but it was also normal to sleep with people outside your household. The author even admits that in her piece. She also admits it was normal for women not to know who the true father was.
To say Cleopatra is PURE Greek is and feel as though your 100% correct on that is absurd. She may have been Greek by royalty, but Egyptian by blood. As we know Cleopatra set out to change how the world thought. She considered herself Egyptian. Remember, she was a Pharaoh who married a Roman. She didn’t care much about keeping up with the Ptolemaic dynasty. How can we really know she was PURE Ptolemaic if it is known they practice sleeping outside their marriages with slave and concubines?

Anonymous said...

In those times Africa was all Black there were no other races that lived there. After the trades of slaves either races started moving in. Therefor there is a high chance Cleo was black. I am a white guy who studies Egyptian history intensly.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I'm wondering why anything that is not black is white... It's ridiculous. Caucasian refers to Europeans, right? But then why aren't Spaniards Caucasian. Because everything isn't as black and white as we make them. Technically these are all labels we place upon people. Cleo was neither black nor white people get over it.

Anonymous said...

Your certainty about both of Cleopatra's grandmothers being Ptolemies IS TOTALLY UNFOUNDED and FALLACIOUS, according to
About.com:

"Many scholars actually believe that Cleopatra's paternal grandmother was a concubine. That woman's background has been assumed to be either Alexandrian or Nubian. She may have been ethnically Egyptian, and she may have had a heritage which we'd today call "black.... Cleopatra's mother is usually identified as her aunt, Cleopatra V, daughter of Ptolemy IX. Her mother is also unknown; Cleopatra V was not the daughter of a royal wife, but we don't know if the mother was another Ptolemy relative or a concubine of Egyptian or Semitic African or black African background."

http://womenshistory.about.com/od/cleopatra/a/was_cleopatra_black.htm

Empress Nefertina said...

For all the 'experts'who keep mentioning the intermarriage of the Ptolemy family, you have failed to add that these marriages were 'political' in nature. They wed for power consolidation and they bred for the same reasons. The Ptolemy would have to bred with the Egyptian royal bloodlines in order that their rule would be accepted by the Egyptian people. Which would necessitate that Cleopatra and her siblings mother/mothers would be African. That would not hold the 'horror' then that it apparently still illicits in many today judging by the responses on this blog. Families who interbred soon figured out that it was not healthy to the continuation of their lines as such children tended to be unsound physically and mentally, so they would seek mates who were not such close relation, it was common then just as it is now for the children of women you call 'concubines' to ascend to positions of great power. Cleopatra is purported to have borne children by two of her Roman overlords which of course increased her power, her marriages to her brothers where to solidify her power as a Ptolemy. While she was Greek on her fathers side, she was also African on her mothers, so maybe Halle Berry is the best Actress to play this role. It appears to me that just as pseudoscience once colonized history and world events in favor of Europeans, it will take science to decolonize it with discoveries like Dinknesh(Lucy).

BunBun4life said...

@EmpressFairyTale Nov 23.

First of all, you are dead wrong. The Macedonians were incredibly xenophobic,and the family marriages DID result in children. Every Ptolomic leader prior to Cleopatra refused to even LEARN Egyptian, and you think they would have children with one? LMAO!!

You say her mother was African as if you KNOW, and it is some well known FACT. Her mother, who was her aunt, Cleopatra V. Ptolomec unions PRODUCED CHILDREN.
Her unions with her brother produced no children, and each one died. After,her first child was born with Julius Caesar, Emperor of Rome,a son, Cesarion, After the murder of Caesar, she aligned with Marc Anthony & had twins, a boy and a girl, and then another boy. After her death, the children were raised by the sister of Octavius (the roman who conquered Egpyt)The boys both died, and later her daughter Cleopatra Selene II, was appointed queen of Numibia by Octavius, and later Mauritania.

Egypt was a free and separate country,Rome was not the overlords, but an ally, until Octavius from Rome decided to conquer Egypt. After which Cleo & Marc killed themselves.

Ptolomy XII Father
http://en.rodovid.org/images/thumb/e/e8/Ptol%C3%A9m%C3%A9e_XII_Aul%C3%A8te.jpg/180px-Ptol%C3%A9m%C3%A9e_XII_Aul%C3%A8te.jpg

http://images.suite101.com/1748351_com_396pxptole.jpg
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2542/5825948891_8e53bd10e5.jpg

Cleopatra's ancestors
Cleo the 3rd
http://www.uned.es/geo-1-historia-antigua-universal/ALEJANDRO%20MAGNO/Cleopatra-3.jpg
http://www.uned.es/geo-1-historia-antigua-universal/EGIPTO%20HISTORIA/kleopatra3.jpg

Cleopatra 2nd
http://www.trueknowledge.com/images/thumbs/180/250/af947cd6bcebc882c0dbc2fad7949bb4.jpg

Art of Cleopatra from her time period
http://www.uned.es/geo-1-historia-antigua-universal/ALEJANDRO%20MAGNO/p-cleopatra-ber.JPG

http://uts.cc.utexas.edu/~timmoore/BeaGreekweb/cleopatraancient.jpg

Bust of cleopatra's daughter CleoSelene II aka CLEO VIII
http://amazingers.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/cleopatra-statue.jpg
http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Bios/CleopatraSeleneII.html
A painting made during Cleopatra's life, was found, and though badly damaged, color remained-Using statues and this painting a computer simulation was generated.
http://i.acdn.us/image/A2061/206109/300_206109.jpg

She is KNOWN to have had blonde or reddish blonde hair, pale eyes and very white skin.

Also, as far as Dinknesh (lucy) goes?? Your Australopithecus Afaransis? Well, 2 years ago at least 5 complete skulls of ''Lucys"" and skeletal remains were found in Europe, dating over 2 million years. Also found on an island in SE Asia - showing that OUR (meaning YOURS and MINE) ancestors went their separate ways at least 2 MILLION years ago, prior to the birth of modern man, and that we evolved separately. There was no 'out of africa' 50,000 years ago. Black people did not 'turn white and chinese'
LMAO!! Maybe read some real historical information for a change, you sound like an idiot.

volkancan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Miz Kizzle said...

I am a person of mixed Native American and Caucasian (Dutch and Scottish) ancestry. I have a peaches and cream complexion, high cheekbones, grey eyes and auburn hair.
Yes, I am quit stunning, as hybrids often are but that's not my point.
My point is historic descriptions of Cleopatra say she had grey eyes and auburn hair. (Like moi!) As she was of Greek ancestry she quite possibly had a prominent aquiline nose. She was reputedly quite clever and I doubt she would have wasted any time in a silly debate over race and its myriad issues with a pack of whinging strangers.

Miz Kizzle said...

As for the fool who maintained he or she learned "in school" that some rednecks defaced the noses of ancient statues because to "hide" the fact that the subjects were black, what sort of bizarre black suprematist school did you attend?
Napoleon's troops shot the nose off the Sphinx during target practice. Fact. Boredom, not racism, was involved.
Ancient statues are brittle. Noses protrude. They break off. Enough said.

Tyler said...

I could not disagree more. First, Race is a social construct, not a scientific classification but if it makes you feel better to define egyptions as "white" go ahead. Second, No scientist believes in ANY genetically pure population so no one is 100%. Geneticist Steven Rose determined through skull structure that Egyptions where closer to sub saharan or "black" ethnicity than any other. Its funny cause you seem to have known a little about cleopatra but little about egyptions. You must have taken part of the real information and based the rest on speculation. BTW I am in college for this and i have in fact traced my lineage back to Egyptions and it hurts that people are fighting so much about ethnicity. You seem adamant to keep a white person higher than any other yet you do not understand that the "African's" DNA basically holds the building blocks to all DNA. so instead of bashing you should acknowledge your brothers as equal.

anonymous said...

I think this question is never going to be correctly answered simply because we have found no remains or DNA of Cleopatra or any of her descendents.
It is foolish because black people want her to be africans and white people want her to be Caucasian. You may not like the truth but here it is, the truth is that she was a mixed race as no one is 100% Caucasian. Her father was Caucasian and so was his ancestors, but it has been proved that Cleopatra's half-sister was half African and half Caucasian. (Google her facial reconstruction) It is assumed that Cleopatra was either born of two Greek parents or that her mother was African as well which could entirely be possible. So basically she was neither black nor white really, if you base her appearance on coins and paintings it is highly likely that she was a typical Greek looking women, dark brown curly hair with light eyes(probably blue) and a medium to olive complexion. And do remember that Greek womens bleached their skin by putting deadly makeup on their skin, and also ate chalk to be whiter. On the coins she has a typical greek or roman nose, long with a bump on the bridge and a chubby pointy chin(again not a characteristic of Africans but greeks). And for the person who said that she was from a long bloodline of Africans, i can only say one thing read your history book and not just the pictures because it is known that she inherited the throne not from a true "pharaoh". Wht i mean is that she was not born to be a queen of Egypt.And i completely disagree when it is said that she did not wear egyptian clothes which is absolutely not true, She saw herself as the "Incarnation of Isis" and probably dressed as an egyptian goddess would dress and she also adopted the egyptian culture and beauty rituals. When she became queen of Egypt, she was reborn as Isis.

SecretKelly said...

The coins have been proven to be false...they were used as a depiction of what she wanted outsiders to believe she looked like.

Some of the coins were actually her father that they tried to make into the likeness of what she wanted...

JUST AN FYI

Mike Manahan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike Manahan said...

Are there still ppl thinking Egypt was part of Afrika on ancient times ?

Please, ppl....and did u hear about Macedonian Dinasty ?

Macedonian ppl were the Cleopatra VIII ancestors.

VII ? Yes, even the name was macedonian. The 1st known one was an aunt of Alexander that lived more than 300 yrs before the famous Cleopatra.

peetee said...

Clearly, Cleopatra was crafty and cunning (and caramel-toned?), using her chameleon-like qualities to her advantage. She now sits at the table of Lord Osiris ROFLing at this debate.

LVC said...

One of my biggest problems with white america is their need to hide behind clever word usage instead of being honest. The incredible disparity in black actors in hollywood, in wall street and economic circles, in prisons. Instead of admitting the systemic and social injustice they brush it off as somehow a result of s flaw in our personalities. "We don't work hard enough, or we want things for free, which in its own implies racism. "We are superior because we are willing to do what needs to be done. " Have any of you evr stopped to contemplate why in almost any scientific, social, industrial, etc setting whites are the ones credited with having created or invented it. With seven continents dominated even in this euro time by brown peoples does that really sound plausible? Would you really accept it if the sho were on the other foot? Did any of you bother to really read all the way through Sally's reasoning? Why are you so dead set against hearing new evidence? Sally obviously has it as Dorothy so cleverly pointed out in her back-handed remark about having never talked to anyone who supported her claim. After reading both of these very intelligent ladies im more prone to believe the one who says she doesn't have all the answers rather than the one who uses the tired reasoning well no one else thinks so. In the movie Braveheart there was a line that has always stuck with me when it coms to history it goes "History was written by those who have hung heroes" Anyone wanting to pretend history is anything but an educated guess is well ignorant ...in the most classical sense of the word.

LVC said...

Also as to why this si so important for people of color. It is hard to explain to a people who hav been beat across the head with their own history, and with their own set of heroes, and even villains, the intrinsic importance of history and our place in it. To see your heroes not just by reading some obscure book buried in American Libraries or amazon book accounts, but on the history channel (also known as the Hitler channel) or in the now very multicultural classrooms in America. Why must we as one of you said go find ours out but be inundated with yours. Because I think if you continue down that line of thinking, then its natural end is...Its our country so you have to learn only about us who cares about you" People of color, especially African Americans are tired, and they are longing for movies, TV shows, historical finds that advertise their contributions to a global society, beyond that of our american lineage. And give me one genuine reason why we shouldn't. Cleopatras actual "look" is considered by most at best conjecture of the highest sort. This to me would be like someone in history coming to the coclusion that because of our social history in this country of injustice and hatred towards blacks, that is was highly unlikely that Obama was half black.

skyla vee said...

Who gives a shit how the bitch looked

Marty Woodcock said...

Alexander the Great was born in Pella, the capital of the Ancient Greek Kingdom of Macedon. His army was from that area as well, and his generals were from Macedon too! After Alexander the Great died, his kingdom was divided. Who ruled the divided kingdoms? Alexander's top generals of course! Who were Alexander's generals? Greeks from Macedon! Egypt was conquered by Alexander the Great, and upon his passing, was still ruled by a Greek family, who intermarried with the families of the generals of Alexander the Great, making the entire dynasty Macedon Greek, which some 200 years later, came Cleopatra VII, which was of the same bloodline. There is no official document, suggesting Cleopatra VII’s ancestors married outside Greek bloodlines.

Lisa Halbig said...

The minute everyone stops arguing over color, the minute this world will be a tiny bit better.
I know it's hard because most of you have been brought up to be either a white racist or a black racist but come'on.. when does it stop? Why does it matter? It won't change history if she's purple will it? Well, thankfully there is no PRIMARY EVIDENCE for any of it.
Don't any of you think that there are more important things to be concerned with in the world? I sure hope you're teaching your children about those other things instead of passing on the racism genes.
Some of you should look into DNA testing. You might be shocked at the different colored (no pun meant) ancestors than you might find. If anything, it'll get your minds occupied on something less dangerous than feeding them with racism.


Jamie Lynn said...

Brief Egyptian History:

FIRST of all, two famous egyptian leaders who were in fact of an egyptian blood line are Hatsheput and Nefertiti. If you would like a strong and profound image of an egyptian woman ruler, please look to them...

CLEOPATRA, however, is a decendent of Ptolemy, Ptolemy was a Macedonian Greek. How did this happen?? Ok, to keep it brief Alexander the Great conquered much of the world, as it was known in those days, upon his death his kingdom was divided and distibuted amongst four of his closest advisors. Ptolemy went to Alexandria, Egypt and began reigning as a pharoah. Despite the fact that he was not an egyptian. His decsendents for 300 years (until the Ptolemy dynasty fell at Cleopatra's death) bred only within their bloodline (incest--sick, yes, but actually quite common in monarchies, as they believed their bloodline was of God and therefore the source of their power). So, even though it can not be known with absolute certainty, it is quite probable that Cleopatra looked Macedonian.

Anonymous said...

ok, the Ptolemies did not actually interbreed. If you looked at the records it was an Egyptian practice to make siblings marry each other based on a myth that the god of the sky and the goddess of the earth (who were twins) married each other. The Egyptians believed that this practice caused the Pharaohs of Egypt to be more godly. The Ptolemy dynasty believed to be from Macedonia did not interbreed, but they did marry within their social groups. The only reason Cleopatra even married her brother was to uphold Egyptian customs...why do you think she got with Caesar and Marc?

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