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Cleopatra VII Ptolemaic Dynasty In the springtime of 51 BC Ptolemy Auletes died and left his kingdom in his will to his eighteen year old daughter Cleopatra and her younger brother Ptolemy XIII who was twelve at the time Cleopatra was born in 69 BC in Alexandria Egypt She had two older sisters Cleopatra VI and Berenice IV as well as a younger sister Arsinoe IV There were two younger brothers as well Ptolemy XIII and Ptolemy XIV It is thought that Cleopatra VI may have died as a child and Auletes had Berenice beheaded At Ptolemy Auletes death Pompey a Roman leader was left in charge of the children During the two centuries that preceded Ptolemy Auletes death the Ptolemies were allied with the Romans The Ptolemies strength was failing and the Roman Empire was rising City after city was falling to the Roman power and the Ptolemies could do nothing but create a pact with them During the later rule of the Ptolemies the Romans gained more and more control over Egypt Tributes had to be paid to the Romans to keep them away from Egypt When Ptolemy Auletes died the fall of the Dynasty appeared to be even closer According to Egyptian law Cleopatra was forced to have a consort who was either a brother or a son no matter what age throughout her reign She was married to her younger brother Ptolemy XIII when he was twelve however she soon dropped his name from any official documents regardless of the Ptolemaic insistence that the male presence be first among co-rulers She also had her own portrait and name on coins of that time ignoring her brothers When Cleopatra became co-regent her world was crumbling down around her Cyprus Coele-Syria and Cyrenaica were gone There was anarchy abroad and famine at home Cleopatra was a strong-willed Macedonian queen who was brilliant and dreamed of a greater world empire She
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