Weird Things You Didn’t Know About Cleopatra

Entertainment

She’s appeared in dozens of Hollywood films and at least a bazillion books, from biographies to historical novels to science fiction. More than 1,500 years before the reign of Elizabeth I of England, Cleopatra proved that women were capable of ruling nations, and that they could do it with intelligence, grace, and sometimes brutality. But much of what we know — and don’t know — about the queen of the Nile comes from history that has been fictionalized, refictionalized, and fictionalized some more, so much that the made-up stuff is sometimes better-known than the facts, and the facts themselves are kind of surprising.