Suggestions About the Relationship of Mark Antony and Cleopatra

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The relationship of Mark Antony and Cleopatra was a complex one. It is one of the most well known, epic love stories in history. Yet, it is shrouded in mystery due to a lack of reliable sources. She has been portrayed throughout history as a great beauty and a knowledgeable, powerful leader. He however, has not. His standing was influenced by two powerful people and equally powerful situations. For instance those of the most import, the assassination of Julius Caesar and his great love affair with Cleopatra.

From historical sources we can ascertain two views of the relationship between Mark Antony and Cleopatra. Firstly we see that Cleopatra, is hopeless and devoted to this man:

“A mistress who was utterly devoted to him alone” (Scott-Kilvert,I.(trans) p.320)

This quote states she was devoted to him, even though we know he had a wife; Octavia, and to him alone. This source goes on:

“As long as she could see him and spend her life with him and if he drove her away it would be the death of her”(Scott-Kilvert,I.(trans) p.320)

This not only suggests that she was devoted to and loved Mark Antony but that her life depended on their continued relationship. Other sources suggest that Cleopatra was not alone in being in love with this man but he reciprocated, as can be seen in the following quote:

“The love for Cleopatra which now entered his life... It excited to the point of madness many passions..” (Reputations p.9)

Not only was Mark Antony in love with her he was also apparently passionately attracted to her. However, other sources do offer different opinions on the relationship of Mark Antony and Cleopatra. These other sources suggest that Mark Antony was feeble minded and Cleopatra was a calculating manipulator.

“Antony's moral failings lead him to destruction and the agent of his ruin is Cleopatra.”(Reputations p.9)

It can also be seen from the source that Cleopatra was not alone in being slandered.
“He must be an...
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