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THE VALLEY OF THE NILE.
THE PTOLEMIES.
ALEXANDRIA.
CLEOPATRA'S FATHER.
ACCESSION TO THE THRONE.
CLEOPATRA AND Caesar.
THE ALEXANDRINE WAR.
CLEOPATRA A QUEEN.
THE BATTLE OF PHILIPPI.
CLEOPATRA AND ANTONY.
THE BATTLE OF ACTIUM.
THE END OF CLEOPATRA.

afterward retired to Asia, where she was now living an exile. Cleopatra, 

either from a sentiment of past revenge, or else from some apprehensions 

of future danger, now desired that her sister should die. Antony readily 

acceded to her request. He sent an officer in search of the unhappy 

princess. The officer slew her where he found her, within the precincts 

of a temple to which she had fled, supposing it a sanctuary which no 

degree of hostility, however extreme, would have dared to violate. 

 

Cleopatra remained at Tarsus for some time, revolving in an incessant 

round of gayety and pleasure, and living in habits of unrestrained 

intimacy with Antony. She was accustomed to spend whole days and nights 

with him in feasting and revelry. The immense magnificence of these 

entertainments, especially on Cleopatra's part, were the wonder of the 

world. She seems to have taken special pleasure in exciting Antony's 

surprise by the display of her wealth and the boundless extravagance in 

which she indulged. At one of her banquets, Antony was expressing his 

astonishment at the vast number of gold cups, enriched with jewels, that 

were displayed on all sides. "Oh," said she, "they are nothing; if you 

like them, you shall have them all." So saying, she ordered her servants 

to carry them to Antony's house. The next day she invited Antony again, 

with a large number of the chief officers of his army and court. The 

table was spread with a new service of gold and silver vessels, more 

extensive and splendid than that of the preceding day; and at the close 

of the supper, when the company was about to depart, Cleopatra 

distributed all these treasures among the guests that had been present 

at the entertainment. At another of these feasts, she carried her 

ostentation and display to the astonishing extreme of taking off from 

one of her ear-rings a pearl of immense value and dissolving it in a cup 

of vinegar,[1] which she afterward made into a drink, such as was 

customarily used in those days, and then drank it. She was proceeding to 

do the same with the other pearl, when some of the company arrested the 

proceeding, and took the remaining pearl away. 

 

[Footnote 1: Pearls, being of the nature of _shell_ in their 

composition and structure, are soluble in certain acids.] 

 

In the mean time, while Antony was thus wasting his time in luxury and 

pleasure with Cleopatra, his public duties were neglected, and every 

thing was getting into confusion. Fulvia remained in Italy. Her position 

and her character gave her a commanding political influence, and she 

exerted herself in a very energetic manner to sustain, in that quarter 

of the world, the interests of her husband's cause. She was surrounded 

with difficulties and dangers, the details of which can not, however, be 

here particularly described. She wrote continually to Antony, urgently 

entreating him to come to Rome, and displaying in her letters all those 

marks of agitation and distress which a wife would naturally feel under 

the circumstances in which she was placed. The thought that her husband 

had been so completely drawn away from her by the guilty arts of such a 

woman, and led by her to abandon his wife and his family, and leave in 

neglect and confusion concerns of such momentous magnitude as those 

which demanded his attention at home, produced an excitement in her mind 

bordering upon frensy. Antony was at length so far influenced by the 

urgency of the case that he determined to return. He broke up his 

quarters at Tarsus and moved south toward Tyre, which was a great naval 

port and station in those days. Cleopatra went with him. They were to 

separate at Tyre. She was to embark there for Egypt, and he for Rome. 

 

At least that was Antony's plan, but it was not Cleopatra's. She had 

determined that Antony should go with her to Alexandria. As might have 

been expected, when the time came for the decision, the woman gained the 

day. Her flatteries, her arts, her caresses, her tears, prevailed. After 

a brief struggle between the sentiment of love on the one hand and those 

of ambition and of duty combined on the other, Antony gave up the 

contest. Abandoning every thing else, he surrendered himself wholly to 

Cleopatra's control, and went with her to Alexandria. He spent the 

winter there, giving himself up with her to every species of sensual 

indulgence that the most remorseless license could tolerate, and the 


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