There relationship seems to have different impacts on their strength as leaders, Cleopatra is shown to have a positive strength as a leader for being able to persuade Antony into coming under her rule and abandoning his own people. Antony on the other hand is shown in a more negative light for bowing down to a woman, and falling for her alluring charms.
Plutarch’s reflection of Antony and Cleopatra is very negative, mainly towards Cleopatra. He views Cleopatra as one of the main causes for the ruination of Antony. He portrays Cleopatra as manipulative, using her charm and sexual dominance as a weapon, used to control Antony into carrying out her wishes, whereas Antony follows her wishes almost to win her approval and love. Up until their choice to commit suicide they were both portrayed in a negative light by many people, it was only their choice to end their lives rather than be captured alive by Octavian, which showed their honour and courage as leaders.
Similarly Cassius has a very bad image of Cleopatra and her people, practically calling them preposterous for ‘worshipping reptiles and beasts as gods, and bowing down to a woman’. This shows us that Rome was very masculine and felt threatened by a strong female figure.
In the poem by Horace, Cleopatra is referenced similarly to the way Plutarch wrote. Explaining how Rome can almost rejoice in the fact that Cleopatra is no longer a threat, ‘now we must drink, now we must beat the earth with unfetted feet’. Referencing her as ‘the mad Queen’, but then as with Plutarch, Horace ends the poem almost admiring her ‘to be a humble woman in a proud triumph’.
We must however remember that many of the authors of these famous views were not actually around to see the actual events that surrounded Antony and Cleopatra, they have heard stories or used historical sources to aid their theories. Although some would have spent a long time gathering the facts to be as accurate as possible, they would have also been influenced...