By Bill Dudley

The California Science Center is the only place on the West Coast you can see over 150 ancient artifacts from the life of Cleopatra.

This mysterious woman is not just for Elizabeth Taylor fans anymore. Now you can see artifacts long hidden by earthquakes and tsunamis almost 2,000 years ago. Archaeologist Frank Goddio has uncovered over 150 items never seen before in the Western world. Although long the subject of magnificent art and theater, from even before the days of Shakespeare, very little is actually known about Cleopatra.

She was the last Pharoah of Ancient Egypt, ascending to the throne at just 17. She married (and bore children to) two of Rome’s most famous leaders, Julius Caesar and Marc Antony. Although known as an Egyptian, she was actually from the Ptolemaic Greek Dynasty.

After 20 years on the Egyptian throne, she and Mark Antony both committed suicide rather than become slaves to Octavian Caesar. Cleopatra was always thought to be a great beauty, but the coins and statues bearing her likeness do not reflect that.I’m thinking the Egyptian government wanted her to appear majestic rather than beautiful.

Her jewelry on display is gorgeous. I couldn’t help thinking of The WAVE’s own jewelry magnate Talaya as I saw it. The audio voice on the guided tour also sounded like Talaya. Must have just been a coincidence.

Over 13,000 square feet of Cleopatra’s jewelry, statues and coins await you at The California Science Center. Be sure and watch the video to see how archaeologists uncovered these treasures fairly recently from deep under the sea. If you have time, also catch “Mysteries of Egypt” at The Imax Theater. You will learn some things you didn’t know.


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