History has always been stranger and more fascinating than fiction and that is nowhere more true than one of the most enduring is the love story of all time — Marc Anthony of Rome and Queen Cleopatra of Egypt. Prior to meeting Marc Anthony Cleopatra was the lover of Julius Cesar. After his death 44 B.C. she tried to regain her illegitimate son’s rightful place in Rome by forming an alliance with Marc Anthony to defeat Gaius Octavius.
In 41 B.C. the two met to form a military alliance against Octavian. The meeting would be recounted in countless books and films for over 2000 years. Contrary to popular belief Cleopatra was thought to be quite plain but was known for her wit, charm, charisma and intelligence. But many say it was her ambition that actually drew Marc Anthony to her. After the fateful meeting he followed her to Egypt to plan their attack on Octavius. To add insult to injury Marc Anthony was married to Octavius’s sister Octavia.
The Battle of Actium in 31 B.C. was the culmination of the turmoil surrounding the succession. At Actium Octavius’s navy defeated the naval fleet of Marc Anthony and Cleopatra. The pair made it out of the battle alive and returned to Egypt only to find that because Octavius wanted to total control over the Roman Empire he invaded Egypt and forced Marc Anthony and Cleopatra to surrender to him.
During the ending turmoil of the war Marc Anthony was told that Cleopatra committed suicide. Although the report turned out to be false but not before Marc Anthony tried to kill himself with a dagger into his abdomen. Since he remained alive his men took him to where Cleopatra was hiding where he finally died. After that Cleopatra was found and taken prisoner. It is said she had a poisonous snake smuggled in to her by a servant so she could die to be with the great love of her life Marc Anthony.