Unsolved Mystery: Theories Suggest That Cleopatra Was Assassinated

Cleopatra married both of her younger brothers.

Cleopatra was indeed a mysterious figure as she was fond of strange things. She ruled Egypt beside her brother as her better half. Yes, she married her own brother to keep the Ptolemaic Kingdom undiluted.

Cleopatra and Ptolemy XIII
Cleopatra and Ptolemy XIII. Source:

Like multiple ancient royal houses, members of the Ptolemaic dynasty often married within the family to conserve and safeguard the purity of their bloodline. Quite a lot of Cleopatra’s ancestors tied the knot with their siblings, and her own parents were possibly siblings too. Cleopatra also married both of her younger brothers. Cleopatra was made the queen of Egypt after the death of her father, Ptolemy XII, in 51 B.C.

Did you know that Cleopatra was not Egyptian?

Yes, Cleopatra had no Egyptian blood, but she learned the Egyptian language to maximize her influence on Egyptian people. She was also declared the daughter of Re, the Egyptian sun god. Cleopatra soon fell into a conflict with her brother, and a civil war commenced in 48 B.C.

According to history and certain rumours, Cleopatra died from a poisonous snake bite. Experts say that the snake was an Egyptian cobra. The snakes were a symbol of royalty back then. Furthermore, Isis was Cleopatra’s favourite goddess and her insignia was a snake. Hence, Cleopatra’s death looks fabricated.

The aforementioned theory cannot be accurate as modern-day Egyptologists consider it a false tale.

Cobras are generally five feet long and can grow up to eight feet. A snake as massive as a cobra cannot possibly fit into a basket of figs. Moreover, not all snake bites are deadly.

Furthermore, if Cleopatra poisoned herself to death, experts argue that it’s more likely she downed a deadly concoction, or applied some sort of a lethal ointment. Both of these would have halted her breathing more swiftly and efficiently than a snake bite.

A German historian and expert, Christoph Schaefer, suggested that Cleopatra may have consumed a fatal mix of hemlock, wolfsbane and opium, based on his studies of ancient documents. He also had a detailed conversation about this with a toxicologist.

Moreover, deadly plots were as much a Ptolemaic custom as family marriages, and Cleopatra and her siblings were no different. Her first husband, who was also her brother, tried to dethrone her. The pair came face to face in a brutal civil war. Cleopatra gained an upper hand and let Ptolemy drown in the Nile River. It was indeed brutal.

Cleopatra was a prominent figure of the Egyptian dynasty and killed many for her personal benefit. She wanted power and her siblings were her rivals.

It is possible that someone related to her siblings assassinated her. The records are unclear and experts fail to understand the mystery behind her death. Was she killed? We do not know for sure.

Moreover, the archaeologists and experts cannot find traces leading to her tomb. She was one of the most popular figures in Egypt, yet her tomb remains unknown. We do not know if she deliberately hid her resting place from the rest of the world or not.

The archaeologists are still trying to locate her remains.



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