Livius.Org Anatolia Carthage Egypt Germ. Inf. Greece Judaea Mesopotamia Persia Rome Other

Cleopatra III


Marble head of Cleopatra III. Württembergisches Landesmuseum, Stuttgart (Germany). Photo Marco Prins.
Cleopatra III (Württembergisches Landesmuseum, Stuttgart).
Cleopatra III: queen of the Ptolemaic Empire, ruled from 116 to 101, first with Ptolemy IX Soter Lathyros, later with Ptolemy X Alexander.

Relatives:

Main deeds:

  • 160: Born as daughter of Ptolemy VI Philometor and his sister Cleopatra II.
  • July 145: Ptolemy VI is killed in action.
  • Before 8 August 145: Ptolemy VIII Physcon becomes master of Egypt; he marries his sister Cleopatra II, widow of the former king Ptolemy VI Philometor.
  • 141/140: Ptolemy VIII marries his niece and stepdaughter Cleopatra III.
  • c.140: birth of Cleopatra IV
  • 140/139: Birth of Ptolemy IX Soter
  • 140/139: The two Cleopatras, mother and daughter, quarrel. An influential courtier named Galestes attempts a coup, unsuccessfully.
  • 139: To strengthen their position, Ptolemy VIII and Cleopatra III seek support from the native population.
  • c.135: Birth of Cleopatra V Selene and Tryphaena
  • 132, November: Outbreak of civil war between Ptolemy VIII and Cleopatra II. Cleopatra III appears to have stayed on Cyprus.
  • 131, autumn: Cleopatra II controls Alexandria.
  • 131/130: Ptolemy is on Cyprus.
  • 130, spring: Ptolemy returns to Egypt and defeats his opponents.
  • 127: Cleopatra III returns to Egypt too.
  • 124/123: Tryphaena marries to Antiochus VIII Grypus
  • 28 June 116: Death of Ptolemy VIII, who is succeeded by Cleopatra III. She wants to rule with Ptolemy X Alexander, but the Alexandrines force her to accept Ptolemy IX Soter, who is fourteen years old, as co-ruler. Ptolemy X receives an honorary position as general on Cyprus.
  • Cleopatra tries to gain support from the native population; she presents herself as the goddess Isis and the goddess Maat.
  • October 110-February 109: Ptolemy X briefly replaces Ptolemy IX as co-ruler
  • March 108: Ptolemy X briefly replaces Ptolemy IX, but this second attempt is a failure too, and Ptolemy IX returns
  • March 108: Ptolemy X briefly replaces Ptolemy IX; at the same time, Cleopatra's stepson Ptolemy Apion becomes ruler of the Cyrenaica.
  • October 107: Ptolemy IX flees to Cyprus; Ptolemy X Alexander becomes king.
  • 105/104: Cleopatra replaces Ptolemy X as priestess of Alexander the Great.
  • 103: Antiochus IX Cyzicenus supports the Samarians against the Hasmonaean king John Hyrcanus of Judaea; Ptolemy IX supports Antiochus, hoping that Judaea will be a first step to a return to Egypt.
  • Ptolemy X Alexander invades Judaea, reaches Damascus, and returns
  • 20 February 102: Cleopatra III defeats Ptolemy IX Soter near Pelusium
  • 26 October 101: Ptolemy X Alexander orders the killing of Cleopatra and continues as sole ruler
Note: Cleopatra's military commanders were both Jewish, Chelkias and Ananias, sons of the high priest Onias of Heliopolis

Succeeded by:
 Ptolemy X Alexander
Ancient-Warfare.com, the online home of Ancient Warfare magazine

This page was prepared to offer background information to the real articles on Livius.Org. One day, it will be improved. A list of completed articles can be found here.
© Jona Lendering for
Livius.Org, 2006
Revision: 5 August 2008
Livius.Org Anatolia Carthage Egypt Germ. Inf. Greece Judaea Mesopotamia Persia Rome Other