Ptolemy, one of Alexander the Great's generals, was appointed satrap of Egypt after Alexander's death in 323 BC. In 305 BC he declared himself King Ptolemy I, later known as "Soter" (saviour). The Egyptians soon accepted the Ptolemies as the successors to the pharaohs of independent Egypt. Ptolemy's family ruled Egypt until the Roman conquest of 30 BC. The dynastic history of Ptolemaic Egypt is very confusing, because all the male rulers of the dynasty took the name Ptolemy, and because many of them married their sisters, who were often called Cleopatra. The most famous member of the line was the last Ptolemaic queen, Cleopatra VII. Ptolemaic rulers and consorts The dates in brackets are regnal dates for the kings. They frequently ruled jointly with their wives, who were often also their sisters. Several queens exercised regal authority, but the most famous and successful was Cleopatra VII (51 BC30 BC), with her two brothers and her son as successive nominal corulers. Several systems exist for numbering the later rulers; the one used here is the one most widely used by modern scholars. Ptolemy I Soter (305 BC282 BC) married Eurydice, then Berenice I Ptolemy II Philadelphos (284 BC246 BC) married Arsinoe I, then Arsinoe II Philadelphos; ruled jointly with Ptolemy the Son (267 BC259 BC) Ptolemy III Euergetes I (246 BC222 BC) married Berenice II Ptolemy IV Philopator (222 BC204 BC) married Arsinoe III Ptolemy V Epiphanes (204 BC180 BC) married Cleopatra I Ptolemy VI Philometor (180 BC164 BC, 163 BC145 BC) married Cleopatra II Ptolemy VII Neos Philopator (never reigned) Ptolemy VIII (170 BC163 BC, 145 BC116 BC) Euergetes II (Physcon) married Cleopatra II then Cleopatra III (Kokke) Cleopatra II (132 BC124 BC) Philometora Soteira, in opposition to Ptolemy VIII Ptolemy IX Philometor Soter II (Lathyros) (116 BC107 BC, 88 BC81 BC) married Cleopatra IV then Cleopatra Selene; ruled jointly with Cleopatra III in his first reign Ptolemy X Alexander I (107 BC88 BC) married Cleopatra Selene then Berenice III; ruled jointly with Cleopatra III till 101 BC Berenice III Philopator (81 BC80 BC) Ptolemy XI Alexander II (80 BC) married and ruled jointly with Berenice III then alone for 18/19 days Ptolemy XII Neos Dionysos (Auletes) (80 BC58 BC, 55 BC51 BC) and Cleopatra V Cleopatra V Tryphaena (58 BC57 BC) ruled jointly with Berenice IV Epiphaneia (58 BC55 BC) Cleopatra VII Thea Neotera (51 BC30 BC) ruled jointly with Ptolemy XIII (51 BC47 BC) Arsinoe IV (48 BC47 BC) in opposition to Cleopatra VII Ptolemy XIV (47 BC44 BC) jointly with Cleopatra VII then Ptolemy XV Caesarion (44 BC30 BC) jointly with Cleopatra VII Simplified Ptolemaic family tree Many of the relationships shown in this tree are controversial. The issues are fully discussed in the external links. See also Hellenistic Greece Links
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