Ptolemaic pharaohs were crowned by the Egyptian High Priest of Ptah at Memphis, Egypt, but resided in the multicultural and largely Greek city of Alexandria, established by Alexander the Great of Macedon.
She also spoke Ethiopian, Trogodyte, Hebrew (or Aramaic), Arabic, the Syrian language (perhaps Syriac), Median, Parthian, and Latin, although her Roman contemporaries would have preferred to speak with her in her native Koine Greek.
However, Ptolemy XIII's chief adviser Potheinos viewed Caesar's terms as favoring Cleopatra, so his forces, which eventually fell under the control of Cleopatra's younger sister Arsinoe IV, besieged both Caesar and Cleopatra at the palace.
The siege was lifted by reinforcements in early 47 BC and Ptolemy XIII died shortly thereafter in the Battle of the Nile.
Cleopatra's legacy survives in numerous works of art, both ancient and modern, and many dramatizations of incidents from her life in literature and other media.
She was described in various works of Roman historiography and Latin poetry.
However, with opposition building at the royal court against the idea of a sole reigning female monarch, Berenice III accepted joint rule and marriage with her cousin and stepson Ptolemy XI Alexander II, an arrangement made by the Roman dictator Sulla.
Ptolemy XI, and perhaps his uncle Ptolemy IX or father Ptolemy X Alexander I, willed the Ptolemaic Kingdom to Rome as collateral for loans, so that the Romans had legal grounds to take over Egypt, their client state, after the assassination of Ptolemy XI.
Cleopatra then had Ptolemy XIV killed and elevated her son Caesarion as co-ruler.
Arsinoe IV was eventually exiled to Ephesus and Caesar, now an elected dictator, declared Cleopatra and her younger brother Ptolemy XIV as joint rulers of Egypt.
However, Caesar maintained a private affair with Cleopatra that produced a son, Caesarion (i.e. Cleopatra traveled to Rome as a client queen in 46 and 44 BC, staying at Caesar's villa.
The latter produced a generally polemic and negative view of the queen that pervaded later Medieval and Renaissance literature.
In the visual arts, ancient depictions of Cleopatra include Roman and Ptolemaic coinage, statues, busts, reliefs, cameo glass, cameo carvings, and paintings.