Catalogue


Cleopatra of Egypt : from history to myth /
edited by Susan Walker and Peter Higgs.
imprint
Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, 2001.
description
384 p. : ill. (chiefly col.), maps ; 30 cm.
ISBN
0691088357 (cased)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, 2001.
isbn
0691088357 (cased)
catalogue key
4394737
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Susan Walker is Deputy Keeper in the Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities at the British Museum. She is the author of Roman Art and Greek and Roman Portraits and the coauthor of Ancient Faces: Mummy Portraits from Roman Egypt. Peter Higgs is Curator in the Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities at the British Museum, with a specialized interest in the collections of later Classical and Hellenistic Greek sculpture
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2001-04-30:
Was Egypt's last queen a female Machiavelli, a goddess, femme fatale or worse? Was she beautiful or woefully overrated? Cleopatra, who died in 30 B.C., has long had fantasy and slander directed at her, without anyone from beyond her time and place knowing what she looked like. Timed to coincide with a British Museum exhibit (which then travels to Rome and Chicago) Cleopatra of Egypt: From History to Myth analyzes the ways the queen's image has changed from the Renaissance to the present. Edited by Susan Walker (Roman Art) and Peter Higgs, deputy keeper and curator, respectively, in the department of Greek and Roman antiquities at the British Museum, the book presents 364 color and 261 b&w illustrations of pieces from the exhibit, including jewelry, sculpture, ceramics, painting and mosaic. ( May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Appeared in Choice on 2001-12-01:
This magnificent publication, the catalog of an exhibition to be shown successively at the Palazzo Ruspoli (Fondazione Memmo) in Rome, the British Museum, and the Field Museum, Chicago, features 11 scholarly but very readable essays and sumptuous photographs of the exhibits. It provides almost everything that the reader is likely to want to know about this celebrated figure. Cleopatra VII (51-30 BCE), a direct descendant of Alexander the Great's Macedonian general, Ptolemy I, was the last ruler of Ptolemaic Egypt. An ethnic Macedonian (with no known native Egyptian ancestry), she was a cultural product of that quintessentially Hellenistic city, Alexandria, although to her credit, her religious policies sought to assuage traditional Egyptian xenophobia. Her Hellenistic antecedents, however, make it wholly appropriate that both of the catalog's editors are classical scholars rather than Egyptologists. Walker is deputy keeper and Higgs is curator in the Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities of the British Museum.) This beautiful book and its accessible text will appeal to specialists and nonspecialists alike. All collections. G. R. G. Hambly University of Texas at Dallas
Appeared in Library Journal on 2001-06-01:
The British Museum's Walker and Higgs assembled a team of 39 international scholars to join them in the production of this lavish catalog for an exhibition that travels from the Palazzo Ruspoli in Rome to the British Museum to Chicago's Field Museum. The historical and legendary Cleopatra VII is brought to life through 394 objects from 35 museums and private collections in Africa, Europe, and North America. In addition to the catalog entries for each object, the background of Egypt's Ptolemaic Dynasty (323-30 B.C.E.), Cleopatra's turbulent reign, and her subsequent passage into myth are explored through 11 essays divided into four topical sections: "The Ptolemies and Alexandria," "Cleopatra, Lady of the Two Lands," "Cleopatra and the Power of Rome," and "Egypt in Rome/The Myth of Cleopatra." One controversial aspect of the exhibition is a corpus of Egyptian-style statues attributed to Cleopatra solely on the basis of stylistic elements. Enhanced by 625 illustrations (364 in color), a chronology, a glossary, an excellent bibliography, and a concordance of objects, this publication is suitable for public and academic libraries. Edward K. Werner, St. Lucie Cty. Lib. Syst., Ft. Pierce, FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Reviews
Review Quotes
There is enough evidence here of Cleopatra's own image creation to demonstrate that, if we find her hard to know, it is not only because the truth about her has been overlaid by 2000 years worth of erotic and racist fantasy, but because she herself was such a protean and ingenious self publicist. -- Lucy Hughes-Hallet, Time Literary Supplement
This hefty, intelligent book attempts to pin down the elusive identity and mysterious story of the fascinating woman who ruled Egypt from 51-30 B.C. . . . It is the book's color plates and illustrations, however, that give it life, an energy as forceful, as vivacious, and as fascinating as Cleopatra herself has been for twenty-one centuries.
This hefty, intelligent book attempts to pin down the elusive identity and mysterious story of the fascinating woman who ruled Egypt from 51-30 B.C. . . . It is the book's color plates and illustrations, however, that give it life, an energy as forceful, as vivacious, and as fascinating as Cleopatra herself has been for twenty-one centuries. -- Karen McCarthy, ForeWord
Detailed and cutting-edge enough for the specialist and accessible enough for the casual exhibition-goer whose interest has been piqued by these antiquities. -- Sarah Lawson, The Art Book
She was, of course, the greatest seductress the world has ever seen. . . . It is hard to think of any ingredient that her story does not have. She was an intellectual, wrote books, took her lover to her library and read rare manuscripts to him for the pleasure of it. . . . She spoke nine languages fluently; she was a capable and efficient ruler as well as a flamboyant one. . . . Perhaps the most compelling conundrum about the queen, though, is what did Cleopatra look like? . . . We have images in our minds of a slim, dusky enchantress, Egyptian straight hair, the headdress of cobras above darkly kohled eyes. The truth is hard to establish; but it is certainly different from that.
Cleopatra of Egyptis an appropriately spectacular catalogue produced in connection with an exhibition that was held in Rome, London, and the Field Museum in Chicago. . . The academic community as well as the general public owe a debt of gratitude to Susan Walker and the curators of the British Museum's Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities for their efforts in publishing this remarkable collection from lending museums in Egypt, Europe, Russia, and North America.
Cleopatra of Egypt is an appropriately spectacular catalogue produced in connection with an exhibition that was held in Rome, London, and the Field Museum in Chicago. . . The academic community as well as the general public owe a debt of gratitude to Susan Walker and the curators of the British Museum's Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities for their efforts in publishing this remarkable collection from lending museums in Egypt, Europe, Russia, and North America. -- Anatole Mori, The Classical Outlook
This sumptuously illustrated catalog [is a] . . . browsable homage to one of the most intriguing figures in all of antiquity. . .
This sumptuously illustrated catalog [is a] . . . browsable homage to one of the most intriguing figures in all of antiquity. . . -- "Booklist
A hefty work of lively expertise and sumptuous . . . illustrations.
This magnificent publication . . . features 11 scholarly but very readable essays and sumptuous photographs of the exhibits. It provides almost everything the reader is likely to want to know about this celebrated figure. . . . This beautiful book and its accessible text will appeal to specialists and nonspecialists alike.
This magnificent publication . . . features 11 scholarly but very readable essays and sumptuous photographs of the exhibits. It provides almost everything the reader is likely to want to know about this celebrated figure. . . . This beautiful book and its accessible text will appeal to specialists and nonspecialists alike. -- "Choice
There is enough evidence here of Cleopatra's own image creation to demonstrate that, if we find her hard to know, it is not only because the truth about her has been overlaid by 2000 years worth of erotic and racist fantasy, but because she herself was such a protean and ingenious self publicist.
[A] lavish catalog. . . . The historical and legendary Cleopatra VII is brought to life through 394 objects from 35 museums and private collections in Africa, Europe, and North America. -- "Library Journal
[A] lavish catalog. . . . The historical and legendary Cleopatra VII is brought to life through 394 objects from 35 museums and private collections in Africa, Europe, and North America.
A lavishly illustrated, informative volume. . . . Cleopatra herself appears in all the guises that enabled her to maintain her dominion over her complicated realm. -- Ingrid D. Rowland, The New Republic
A lavishly illustrated, informative volume. . . . Cleopatra herself appears in all the guises that enabled her to maintain her dominion over her complicated realm.
Cleopatra of Egyptwill be a welcome addition to the library of any Cleopatra enthusiast. The volume is beautifully produced and the images are gorgeous. . . . [It] succeeds in bringing its audience into the world of Cleopatra with thorough analysis of the ancient evidence and plenty of helpful background information.
Cleopatra of Egypt will be a welcome addition to the library of any Cleopatra enthusiast. The volume is beautifully produced and the images are gorgeous. . . . [It] succeeds in bringing its audience into the world of Cleopatra with thorough analysis of the ancient evidence and plenty of helpful background information. -- Prudence J. Jones, Bryn Mawr Classical Review
A hefty work of lively expertise and sumptuous . . . illustrations. -- Judith Thurman, The New Yorker
Detailed and cutting-edge enough for the specialist and accessible enough for the casual exhibition-goer whose interest has been piqued by these antiquities.
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, April 2001
Library Journal, June 2001
Booklist, August 2001
ForeWord Magazine, August 2001
Choice, December 2001
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Main Description
Fabled for her sexual allure and cunning intelligence, Cleopatra VII of Egypt has fascinated generations of admirers and detractors since her tumultuous life ended in suicide in 30 B.C. The last of the Ptolemaic monarchs who had ruled Egypt for three centuries, Cleopatra created her own mythology. She became an icon in her own lifetime and a legend after her death. This lavishly illustrated catalogue coincides with a major international exhibition celebrating images of Cleopatra. It explores how she was depicted during her own era, in works ranging from coins to life-size sculpture. Exciting new discoveries are featured--including seven Egyptian-style statues believed to represent Cleopatra, and two portraits probably commissioned while she was living in Rome with Julius Caesar. The book also examines interpretations of Cleopatra from the Renaissance to modern times, as seen in paintings, ceramics, jewelry, plays, operas, and film. In addition, recent archaeological finds from Alexandria (Cleopatra's capital) and from Rome illustrate aspects of life in Cleopatra's day. EXHIBITION SCHEDULE: Palazzo Ruspoli, Rome October 12, 2000-February 25, 2001 The British Museum, London April 12-August 28, 2001 The Field Museum, Chicago October 20, 2001-March 2, 2002
Table of Contents
Index of lendersp. 6
Forewordp. 7
Prefacep. 8
Acknowledgmentsp. 10
Mapsp. 11
The Ptolemies and Alexandriap. 13
Sins of the fathers: the inheritance of Cleopatra, last queen of Egyptp. 14
Alexandriap. 32
Catalogue Entries 1-152p. 38
Cleopatra, Lady of the Two Landsp. 127
Cleopatra's subtle religious strategyp. 128
Cleopatra's images: reflections of realityp. 142
Identifying the Egyptian-style Ptolemaic queensp. 148
Catalogue Entries 153-193p. 156
Cleopatra and the Power of Romep. 189
'Spoiling the Egyptians': Octavian and Cleopatrap. 190
Searching for Cleopatra's image: classical portraits in stonep. 200
Was Cleopatra beautiful? The conflicting answers of numismaticsp. 210
Catalogue Entries 194-323p. 217
Egypt in Rome / The Myth of Cleopatrap. 275
Egyptian influences in Italyp. 276
Anything truth can do, we can do better: the Cleopatra legendp. 290
The myth of Cleopatra since the Renaissancep. 302
Catalogue Entries 324-394p. 312
Chronologyp. 370
Glossaryp. 371
Bibliographyp. 372
List of authorsp. 374
Concordancep. 375
Photographic acknowledgementsp. 379
Indexp. 380
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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