The latest is that Cleopatra died from a lethal drug cocktail instead of a snakebite. The Pink Flamingo finds this fascinating simply because I am trying to prove that Mattie Blaylock was murdered instead of dying from a drug overdose. It is all about getting historians to look at things differently.
“…According to Christoph Schäfer, a German historian and professor at the University of Trier, the legendary beauty queen was unlikely to have committed suicide by letting an asp — an Egyptian cobra — sink into her flesh.
“There was no cobra in Cleopatra’s death,” Schäfer told Discovery News.
The author of a best-selling book in Germany, “Cleopatra,” Schäfer searched historic writings for evidence to disprove the 2,000-year-old asp legend. His findings are to be featured on the German channel ZDF as part of a program on Cleopatra.
“The Roman historian Cassius Dio, writing about 200 years after Cleopatra’s demise, stated that she died a quiet and pain-free death, which is not compatible with a cobra bite. Indeed, the snake’s venom would have caused a painful and disfiguring death,” Schäfer said.
According to German toxicologist Dietrich Mebs, a poison specialist taking part in the study, the symptoms occurring after an asp bite are very unpleasant, and include vomiting, diarrhea and respiratory failure.
“Death may occur within 45 minutes, but it may also be longer with painful edema at the bite site. At the end, the dead body does not look very nice with vomit, diarrhea, a swollen bite site,” Mebs told Discovery News.
Ancient texts also record that Cleopatra’s two handmaidens died with her — something very unlikely if she had died of a snake bite, said Schäfer.
The Queen of the Nile committed suicide in August 30 B.C. at the age of 39, following the example of her lover, the Roman leader Marc Antony, who killed himself after losing the Battle of Actium.
At that time, temperatures in Egypt would have been so high that “it was almost impossible for a snake to stay still enough to bite,” Schäfer said….”