Archaeologists find new clues that may uncover Cleopatra and Antony’s tombs

April 17th, 2009 - 3:09 pm ICT by ANI  

Cleopatra Washington, April 17 (ANI): Archaeologists, digging in a site in Egypt to discover the burial place of the legendary Cleopatra, have come across new leads in the form of 27 graves, a headless statue of the queen, and a mask that could probably be that of Mark Antony.

The findings, by the archaeological mission led by an Egyptian - Dominican team, could help in detecting the burial place of Queen Cleopatra of Egypt and her Roman lover Mark Antony.

The most important find made by the expedition was the discovery of a large graveyard outside a temple called Tabusiris Magna, which lies 30 kilometers from the port city of Alexandria in northern Egypt.

So far, 27 tombs have been unearthed in the area, besides burial chambers and 10 mummies, he added.

The place seems to have been a cemetery for nobility and senior employees during the Ptolemaic era in the history of ancient Egypt, according to Zahi Hawwas, the head of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities.
Other finds include an alabaster head of the last Queen of Egypt in addition to 22 bronze coins bearing her face.

Cleopatra, who came to power at the age of 18, was once the ruler of Egypt and considered the last of seven queens of the same name.

She was famous for her intelligence, her beauty and her political power.

In an early stage of her life, she married the powerful Roman ruler Julius Caesar and gave birth to his son Caesarion.

Born in Rome, Mark Antony was a military general and commander, as well as supporter of Julius Caesar.

After Julius Caesar’s assassination on March 15, 44 BC, Antony formed a triumvirate with Octavian, also known as Augustus, and Marcus Lepidus.

Civil war ensued in Rome due to disagreements between Antony and Octavian, who was Julius Caesar’s heir and who later became Rome’s first Emperor.

Antony was subsequently defeated by Octavian and he later committed suicide. Cleopatra committed suicide after his death in August 30 BC.

Her death marked the end of the Ptolemaic rule in Egypt. (ANI)

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