EBOOK Cleopatra A Life By Stacy Schiff – dugisits.co.za

Review Cleopatra A Life

Cleopatra A Life Read º 0 The Pulitzer Prize winning biographer brings to life the most intriguing woman in the history of the world Cleopatra the last ueen of EgyptHer palace shimmered with onyx garnets and gold but was richer still in political and sexual intrigue Above all else Cleopatra was a shrewd strategist and an ingenious negotiatorThough her life spanned fewer than forty years it reshaped the contours of the ancient world She was married twice each time to a brother She waged a brutal civil war against the first when both were teenagers She poisoned the second Ultimately she dispensed with an ambitious sister as. So far I am very disappointed in this book by a Pulitzer Prize winning author She uses very long paragraphs that should have been divided She puts her points embedded so that it s hard for a reader to see what she intends to be significant There are clever pieces that are not at all clever The author says she will not create material but may create context from other sources but she does not give the reader cues For example in Chapter II she goes on and on about Cleopatra s education including details about her oral reading her rhetorical skills etc for at least 6 pages then finally she cites Plutarch for her end point educational achievements most of which have been given over and over in other work about CleopatraI appreciated the author s judgments about the difficulties of a Greek speaker learning Egyptian of that era demotic and formal compared with the difficulties of an Egyptian speaker learning Greek But I did not find her showing evidence whether or not these were generalizations or actually the case with CleopatraI also found boring the detailed accounts of the Ptolemies intermarriages of the ruthless executions of family members in line of succession and of the conflict brought on by the Macedonia ancestry of the Ptolemies including Cleopatra simply because there are other sources for this I see I have written one of those sentences that I have blamed Schiff for Blush This book may be useful for readers who haven t studied Cleopatra Julius Caesar Marc Antony etc before I also consider it useful for the broader discussion of the many women of educational achievement of this era I also found her description of the Alexandrian library and the tutorscholars making use of it during her education I m going to give the author another chapter and if it doesn t improve I ll put it aside for other sourcesAddition August 2011 I have read parts of the book now and still have the same reactions I am hoping some other Goodreads reviews will point me to uniue useful and artistic aspects of this prizewinning historical fiction

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Cleopatra A Life Read º 0 Well; incest and assassination were family specialties Cleopatra appears to have had sex with only two men They happen however to have been Julius Caesar and Mark Antony among the most prominent Romans of the day Both were married to other women Cleopatra had a child with Caesar and–after his murder–three with his protégé Already she was the wealthiest ruler in the Mediterranean; the relationship with Antony confirmed her status as the most influential woman of the age The two would together attempt to forge a new empire in an alliance that spelled their ends Cleopatra has lodged herself i. Stacy Schiff has a serious girl crush on Cleopatra If you want to read 300 pages about how awesome ueen Cleo was then this is the book for youI remembered little about the famous Egyptian ruler from world history class in high school and I don t think the Elizabeth Taylor movie counts as a documentary so Schiff s book felt like my introduction to Cleopatra The book covers her family her childhood her education her ability to charm and manipulate her relationships with Julius Caesar and Mark Antony the political climate in Rome and Alexandria her death and her enduring appeal Among the most famous women to have lived Cleopatra VII ruled Egypt for 22 years She lost a kingdom once regained it nearly lost it again amassed an empire lost it all A goddess as a child a ueen at 18 a celebrity soon thereafter she was an object of speculation and veneration gossip and legend even in her own time At the height of her power she controlled virtually the entire eastern Mediterranean coast the last great kingdom of any Egyptian ruler For a fleeting moment she held the fate of the Western world in her hands She had a child with a married man three with another She died at 39 a generation before the birth of Christ Catastrophe reliably cements a reputation and Cleopatra s end was sudden and sensational She has lodged herself in our imaginations ever since Throughout the book Schiff relates what various historians and storytellers have written over the years about Cleopatra pointing out inconsistencies or motives and she also offers her own ideas about the ueen I appreciated this inclusion of narratives especially since some writers had their own agenda Schiff s opinions were generally about how smart and shrewd Cleopatra was and how she could orchestrate events to her liking or how she could manipulate political figures mostlyMy complaint about the book was how dense it could be Schiff sometimes got bogged down in too many trivial details that slowed down the narrative But overall the prose is lovely and engaging and I enjoyed listening to this on audio read by Robin Miles I would recommend this to fans of history and girl power obviouslyFavorite uotesCan anything good be said of a woman who slept with the two most powerful men of her time Possibly but not in an age when Rome controlled the narrative Cleopatra stood at one of the most dangerous intersections in history that of women and power Clever women Euripides had warned hundreds of years earlier were dangerousFrom an early age she enjoyed the best education available in the Hellenistic world at the hands of the most gifted scholars in what was incontestably the greatest center of learning in existence The library of Alexandria and its attached museum were literally in her backyard The most prestigious of its scholars were her tutors its men of science her doctors She did not have to venture far for a prescription a eulogy a mechanical toy a mapTwo thousand years of bad press and overheated prose of film and opera cannot conceal the fact that Cleopatra was a remarkably capable ueen canny and opportunistic in the extreme a strategist of the first rank Her career began with one brazen act of defiance and ended with another Boldly and bodily she inserted herself into world politics with wide reaching conseuences She convinced her people that a twilight was a dawn and with all her might struggled to make it so In a desperate situation she improvised wildly then improvised afresh for some a definition of genius There was a glamour and a grandeur to her story well before either Octavian or Shakespeare got his hands on it Hers was an exhilarating presence before she sent Plutarch many pages out of his way she had the same effect on his countrymen From our first glimpse of her to the last she dazzles for her ability to set the scene To the end she was mistress of herself astute spirited inconceivably rich pampered yet ambitious

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Cleopatra A Life Read º 0 N our imaginations ever sinceFamous long before she was notorious Cleopatra has gone down in history for all the wrong reasons Shakespeare and Shaw put words in her mouth Michelangelo Tiepolo and Elizabeth Taylor put a face to her name Along the way Cleopatra’s supple personality and the drama of her circumstances have been lost In a masterly return to the classical sources Stacy Schiff here boldly separates fact from fiction to rescue the magnetic ueen whose death ushered in a new world order Rich in detail epic in scope Schiff ‘s is a luminous deeply original reconstruction of a dazzling li. number one thing that I learned from Cleopatra A Life was this I had deceived myself in thinking I knew anything about her before reading this book Stacy Schiff digs deep into the life of one of the most well known yet misunderstood women in history Most of us know her as the Egyptian ueen who had affairschildren with both Caesar and Mark Antony the two most powerful men of their age She herself was much much than thatCleopatra was a fabulously rich woman In contemporary terms her net worth would be around 958 billion dollars She was worth than three ueen Elizabeth IIs Amazingly she also lived in a culture were women were greatly empowered A woman in first century BC could choose her own husband own property grant their own divorces operate businesses and serve as priests As much as one third of Egypt was controlled by female hands There are many other things that stick out to me about Cleopatra s life The biggest was her incestuous family ties Her grandparents were uncle and niece her parents were brother and sister and Cleopatra herself was married to both of her brothers I uestion how there were no physical or mental deformations Another interesting point pertains to her beauty Third century AD records call her strikingly exuisite in appearance while those of the Middle Ages say she was famous for nothing but her beauty Shakespeare raves about her looks However her contemporaries those who actually knew and saw her say nothing about her beauty In fact her appearance was called not remarkable uite different from what most of us have heard about herStacy Schiff wrote an extremely entertaining book full of fun interesting facts I loved her sarcastic voice and the humor she injected into the characters I will say that it seems to drag on forever at the end The story began to focus too much on Mark Antony and the military which uickly lost my interest I skimmed the last 100 pages That being said I d rate it 35 stars the plethora of amazing facts was overshadowed by the fact that I felt I had to force myself to even finish it

  • Hardcover
  • 369
  • Cleopatra A Life
  • Stacy Schiff
  • English
  • 07 September 2020
  • 9780316001922