Cleopatra – The Truth is Ugly (Literally)

Cleopatra and Mark Anthony may forever be one of the most tragic and romantic couples to go down in history. But contrary to the popular myth of Cleopatra, beautiful they were not. A group of English academics have in recent times unearthed a 2000-year-old coin with the images of the star-crossed lovers and were not very impressed by what they saw.

The Egyptian Pharaoh didn’t even have a slight resemblance to actress Elizabeth Taylor (famous for playing the role of Cleopatra in 1963). The coin on the other hand, shows her with a pointed chin, thin lips, and a sharp nose which would make her look more like a witch from Harry Potter.

Her Roman lover fares even worst. Rather than the handsome, dashing, and suave Robert Burton, Mark Antony in reality had bulging eyes, a thick neck, and a hook nose. The Truth is Ugly sometimes….

I hope to come up with a short article on the Battle of Actium (fought between Augustus Caesar and Mark Antony) soon..

Source: Reader’s Digest, June 2007, Volume 89, No. 531

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