Obverse. Photo © Heritage Auctions
  • 50 Pounds 1993, KM# 756, Egypt, Pharaonic Treasure, Cleopatra
  • 50 Pounds 1993, KM# 756, Egypt, Pharaonic Treasure, Cleopatra
Description

Cleopatra VII Philopator (69-30 BC), known to history simply as Cleopatra, was the last active pharaoh of Ptolemaic Egypt, briefly survived as pharaoh by her son Caesarion. After her reign, Egypt became a province of the recently established Roman Empire.

Cleopatra was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, a family of Macedonian Greek origin that ruled Egypt after Alexander the Great's death during the Hellenistic period. Cleopatra originally ruled jointly with her father Ptolemy XII Auletes, and later with her brothers Ptolemy XIII and Ptolemy XIV, whom she married as per Egyptian custom, but eventually she became sole ruler. As pharaoh, she consummated a liaison with Julius Caesar that solidified her grip on the throne.

After Caesar's assassination in 44 BC, she aligned with Mark Antony in opposition to Caesar's legal heir Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus (later known as Augustus). Antony committed suicide after losing the Battle of Actium to Octavian's forces, and Cleopatra followed suit.

Obverse

Bust of Cleopatra left in formal headdress.

Reverse

Stylized state name (Arab Republic of Egypt) divides denomination in Arabic and English and abbreviation of state name (A.R.E.) below, the date in Arabic (Hijri) and Western (Georgian) divides by a vulture with open wings. Engraver's initials (ECC) below.

In Ancient Egypt, the vulture hieroglyph was the uniliteral sign used for the glottal sound (/ɑː/). The bird was held sacred to Isis in ancient Egyptian religion. The use of the vulture as a symbol of royalty in Egyptian culture and their protection by Pharaonic law made the species common on the streets of Egypt and gave rise to the name "pharaoh's chicken".

50 ٥٠ جمهورية مصر العربية
LE جـ
A.R.E.
1414 1993 ECC ١٤١٤ ١٩٩٣

Edge
Characteristics
Type Commemorative Issue (Non-circulating)
Material Gold
Fineness 0.900
Weight 8.5 g
Diameter 24 mm
Thickness -
Shape round
Alignment Medal
Mint
Mexican Mint (Mo)

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