|14 January 83 BC
|1 August 30 BC (aged 53)
Alexandria, Ptolemaic Egypt
|Fadia (dates unknown)
Antonia Hybrida (?–47 BC)
Fulvia (46–40 BC)
Octavia Minor (40–32 BC)
Cleopatra (32–30 BC)
Marcus Antonius Antyllus
Cleopatra Selene II
|Marcus Antonius Creticus
The most well-known aspect of Marcus Antonius (Marc Antony) is that he was a Roman general and Cleopatra’s lover.
Following Octavian’s victory over them, the two killed themselves.
Those very things that procured him ill repute bear witness to his greatness… Antony was thought disgraced by his marriage with Cleopatra, a queen superior in power and glory … to all who were kings in her time. Antony was so great as to be thought by others worthy of higher things than his own desires.
Mark Antony was a Roman general and politician who played a crucial role in the transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire. He was also famous for his love affair with Cleopatra, the queen of Egypt. Here are some interesting facts about his life and legacy.
– Mark Antony was born in 83 BC into a prominent Roman family. His grandfather was a famous orator and his father was a military commander who fought in Crete. His mother was related to Julius Caesar, the most powerful man in Rome.
– Mark Antony had a wild youth, spending lavishly and getting into debt. He fled to Greece to escape his creditors and joined the army of Aulus Gabinius, the governor of Syria. He distinguished himself as a cavalry officer and participated in campaigns in Judea and Egypt.
– Mark Antony became a close ally and friend of Julius Caesar, who was his distant relative. He served under him in Gaul and became one of his most trusted generals. He also held important political offices, such as tribune of the plebs and consul.
– Mark Antony supported Caesar in the civil war against Pompey and his allies, who wanted to preserve the Republic. He fought bravely in several battles and helped Caesar secure his victory and dictatorship. He also acted as Caesar’s second-in-command and deputy in Italy and Rome.
– Mark Antony was present at Caesar’s assassination on March 15, 44 BC. He managed to escape the conspirators and delivered a famous funeral speech that stirred up the people against them. He then formed an alliance with Octavian, Caesar’s adopted son and heir, and Lepidus, another general, to avenge Caesar’s death and take control of the Republic.
– Mark Antony and his allies defeated the assassins at the Battle of Philippi in 42 BC. They then divided the Roman world among themselves: Antony took charge of the eastern provinces, Octavian of the west, and Lepidus of Africa. Antony also married Octavia, Octavian’s sister, to cement their bond.
– Mark Antony became fascinated by Cleopatra, the queen of Egypt, who had been Caesar’s lover and had borne him a son. He met her in Tarsus in 41 BC and fell in love with her. He followed her to Egypt and lived with her for several years, neglecting his duties and alienating his allies.
– Mark Antony tried to balance his loyalty to Rome and his devotion to Cleopatra. He granted her many territories and honors, and recognized their three children as his heirs. He also waged war against Parthia, Rome’s enemy in the east, but suffered heavy losses and had to retreat.
– Mark Antony’s actions provoked Octavian, who saw him as a threat to his power and prestige. Octavian accused him of betraying Rome and declared war on him and Cleopatra. He also obtained Antony’s will from the Vestal Virgins and publicized its contents, which revealed Antony’s intention to be buried in Egypt with Cleopatra.
– Mark Antony and Cleopatra faced Octavian’s forces at the naval Battle of Actium in 31 BC. They were outnumbered and outmaneuvered by Octavian’s admiral Agrippa. Cleopatra fled with her ships, followed by Antony. They lost most of their fleet and army, and their allies deserted them.
– Mark Antony and Cleopatra retreated to Alexandria, where they prepared for a last stand. However, Octavian besieged them and offered them generous terms if they surrendered. Antony refused, but Cleopatra sent him a false message that she had killed herself. Antony then stabbed himself with his sword, but did not die immediately.
– Cleopatra had Antony brought to her mausoleum, where she tried to revive him. She kissed him and held him in her arms until he died. She then locked herself in her tomb with her loyal servants and committed suicide by letting an asp bite her.
– Mark Antony’s death marked the end of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Roman Empire. Octavian became Augustus, the first emperor of Rome, and consolidated his power by eliminating his rivals and enemies. He also annexed Egypt as a province of Rome and took custody of Antony’s children by Cleopatra (except for Caesarion, whom he had killed).