CRF Blog

Cleopatra: A Biography

by Bill Hayes

New York Times Book Review recently gave an outstanding review to Cleopatra: A Biography by Duane W. Roller. From the review:

In Cleopatra’s case, the word ‘biography’ strikes a strange modern note, suggesting the existence of more historical information about her than we in fact have to draw from. But as a historian, classical scholar and archaeologist, Roller brings the full apparatus of what we do know to bear — a tricky task given how Cleopatra’s reputation was officially propagandized into oblivion after her defeat and death. The result is an authoritative, amply footnoted yet brisk account not only of her life but also of its rich backdrop, featuring a cast extending backward through almost three centuries of the Ptolemaic dynasty.