Press Esc to close
Tuesday 23 September 2014
News updated at 1:27 PM IST
Weather
Max: 30.8°C
Min : 21.5°C
In Bangalore
Sunny day

Cleopatra died of drug cocktail not snake bite

London, June 30 (IANS)

Legendary Egyptian queen Cleopatra did not die of a snake bite as is believed but died of a drug cocktail instead, a researcher has claimed.

The lethal drug cocktail included opium and hemlock, Christoph Schaefer, a German historian and professor at the University of Trier, has claimed in his latest research.

The "Queen of the Nile" ended her life in 30 B.C. and it has always been held that it was the bite of an asp, now called the Egyptian cobra, which caused her death.

"Queen Cleopatra was famous for her beauty and was unlikely to have subjected herself to a long and disfiguring death," Schaefer was quoted as saying by The Telegraph newspaper here.


The historian journeyed with other experts to Alexandria, Egypt, where they consulted ancient medical texts and snake experts.

"Cleopatra wanted to remain beautiful in her death to maintain her myth," he said.
"She probably took a cocktail of opium, hemlock and aconitum. Back then, this was a well-known mixture that led to a painless death within just a few hours whereas the snake death could have taken days and been agonising."

Cleopatra reigned from 51 B.C. to 30 B.C. and was the last person to rule Egypt as a pharaoh. After she died, Egypt became a Roman province.

She was an ally of Roman emperor Julius Caesar, and established a relationship with Roman General Mark Anthony. They had three children together and there are letters that suggest she married him, although both of them were already married.In 44 B.C., after the assassination of Caesar, she aligned with Antony to oppose Caesar's legal heir, Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian.

After losing the Battle of Actium to Octavian's forces, Antony committed suicide. Cleopatra followed suit Aug 12, 30 B.C., aged 39.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
In this Sept. 11, 2013, file photo, Indian engineers work on the Mars orbiter spacecraft at the...

In this Sept. 11, 2013, file photo, Indian engineers work on the Mars orbiter spacecraft at the...

Japan's (L-R) Masahiro Yamada, Seiya Takano and Takeshi Terashima celebrate a point during their...

Japan's (L-R) Masahiro Yamada, Seiya Takano and Takeshi Terashima celebrate a point during their...

Star shuttler Saina Nehwal and National badminton coach Pullela Gopichand during the...

Star shuttler Saina Nehwal and National badminton coach Pullela Gopichand during the...

India's Abhinav Bindra concentrates to shoot at the Men's 10m Air Rifle qualification at the 17th...

India's Abhinav Bindra concentrates to shoot at the Men's 10m Air Rifle qualification at the 17th...

Japan's Sakiko Shimizu swims in her women's 400m individual medley heat at the 17th...

Japan's Sakiko Shimizu swims in her women's 400m individual medley heat at the 17th...

Japan's Takeshi Terashima (L) strikes the ball against India during their men's team...

Japan's Takeshi Terashima (L) strikes the ball against India during their men's team...

Siddaramaiah opens online portal along with facebook and twitter handles of CM's office...

Siddaramaiah opens online portal along with facebook and twitter handles of CM's office...

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, center, prepares to give a speech...

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, center, prepares to give a speech...

Turkish Kurdish protesters clash with Turkish security forces during a pro-Kurdish protest ...

Turkish Kurdish protesters clash with Turkish security forces during a pro-Kurdish protest ...

Students of Govt Womens College, Hunsurperform Parisara Samrakshane during Dasara Yuva Sambrama...

Students of Govt Womens College, Hunsurperform Parisara Samrakshane during Dasara Yuva Sambrama...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bangalore - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523