"It is most urgent that I record the troubling events of this week. Father has gone into hiding, having fled for his life. Through it is the twenty-third year of his reign, he is in danger of losing his throne. He is, of course, King Ptolemy Auletes, honored pharaoh of Egypt."
Cleopatra VII[2]

Cleopatra VII: Daughter of the Nile is a fictional diary written by Kristiana Gregory about the last Egyptian pharaoh, Cleopatra. The book was published in 1999 as part of Scholastic's The Royal Diaries. It was adapted into a television film by HBO in 2000. The book was also released in Mon Histoire and My Royal Story.

The young princess of Egypt, Cleopatra VII, travels to Rome with her father, King Ptolemy Auletes.


"Dedicated with much love to my father, Hal Gregory, whose appreaciation of ancient literature gave me the courage to peek at Plutarch and all the rest."

Book description

"3 Januarius, Morning
I could feel my insides shaking. Would this sister try to poison me? Yes, I believe so. As for my other older sister, Berenice—never! She and I adore each other even though I am eight years younger. I took the cup and raised it toward Tryphaena as if toasting her, but really I was watching the liquid, looking for oil floating on its surface, or powder sticking to the sides of the cup. If I suspected poison and tossed it into the pool, she would have her guards behead me on the spot. If it was indeed poison, one sip and I could die.... My eyes closed as I took the first sip, as if savoring such an excellent taste, but really my thought was.
O Isis, I am afraid.... My stomach turned with nervousness, or was it from a fearsome death beginning in me?"[3]

"It's 57 BC, and Princess Cleopatra's father, the Pharaoh, has gone into hiding after an attempt on his life. Even his children don't know where he is. But Cleopatra fears that the assassin will eventually succeed–she must be ready to take the throne. She wants to be the best Pharaoh Egypt has ever known..."

"Partage le journal intime de Cléopâtre, et vis avec elle le destin captivant d'une jeune princesse égyptienne.
27 Fevrier. La nouvelle est arrivée. Le messager était un petit garçon éthiopien qui et s'est écroulé à mes pieds. J'ai gardé ma distance de princesse, mais je lui ai souri quand il a levé les yeux. J'ai porté la tablette jusqu'à la fenêtre, à la lumière. J'ai brisé le sceau, défait la ficelle et lu le message. Mon père qui se cache depuis des semaines se trouve au port, prêt à embarquer pour Rome.


Cleopatra, princess of Egypt, lives in Alexandria with her father, Ptolemy Auletes, three sisters, Tryphaena, Berenice, and Arsinoë, and two brothers, Ptolemy XIII and Ptolemy XIV. One day, the king flees the palace, after a poisonous snake is found in his bedchamber. Cleopatra, fearing that her eldest sister may kill her, boards her father's ship to find assistance in Rome. In the meantime, Tryphaena crowns herself queen of Egypt.

In Rome, Cleopatra and her father stay with a wealthy citizen named Tullus Atticus and meet with several Roman officials, including Pompey the Great. Cleopatra dislikes Rome and becomes homesick, though she perks up when Tullus invites her to his summer villa. There Cleopatra spends time with her new friend, Julia, Pompey's wife and Julius Caesar's daughter. Unfortunately, King Auletes squanders his time and forgoes meeting with officials during Cleopatra's summer away.

In February 56 B.C., Cleopatra meets Cicero, a Roman orator and lawyer. The two are fast friends, until he offends her by arguing against helping King Auletes at the Senate. This delays their departure again, because the Senate must hear all the legal complaints. Meanwhile, Cleopatra grows closer to Marc Antony, the chief cavalry officer, who will lead the soldiers to Alexandria.

The following winter, Cleopatra meets Cicero unexpectedly at Saturnalia. Cleopatra effectively rebukes him for his argument against her father. Some time later, Cicero withdraws his complaints, which finally allows King Auletes to leave with Roman support. Back home in Egypt, Auletes reclaims his throne and beheads his daughter for crowning herself queen. Cleopatra, secretly preparing herself to become queen, decides to learn more about the Egyptians and travels up the Nile with her father's permission.


Main article: List of Cleopatra VII: Daughter of the Nile characters
  • Cleopatra VII, the eponymous daughter of the Nile. She travels to Rome with her father to seek support, after a threat is made on his life.
  • Ptolemy Auletes, flees his palace in Alexandria, when a deadly snake almost kills him. In his absence, two of his daughters betray him and crown themselves queen.



Cleopatra movie on VHS

Main article: The Royal Diaries: Cleopatra VII - Daughter of the Nile

Cleopatra VII: Daughter of the Nile was adapted into a short television film in 2000. The movie was released on video tape the same year and on DVD in 2008. It starred Elisa Moolecherry as Cleopatra.


Main article: Kristiana Gregory

Kristiana Gregory (born 1951 in Los Angeles, California) is a children's author. Her debut novel, Jenny of the Tetons won the Golden Kite Award for Fiction. Gregory has written five books in Dear America, three in The Royal Diaries, and three in My America.

Gregory remembers studying Cleopatra in the fifth grade, picturing her with "beautiful clothes and jewels and [...] floating down the river in a fancy boat". She enjoyed researching her and had never imagined "that [Cleopatra] was so intelligent and could speak several languages."



See also

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