Now Christoph Schaefer, a German historian and professor at the University of Trier, has presented evidence on a television programme that drugs and not a snake were the cause of death. He said that the bite of a snake would have given her an agonizing death over several days. "Queen Cleopatra was famous for her beauty and was unlikely to have subjected herself to a long and disfiguring death," said Schaefer, the author of a best-selling book in Germany called Cleopatra.
"Cleopatra wanted to remain beautiful in her death to maintain her myth. The last female Pharaoh probably took a lethal cocktail, which, back then, was a well-known mixture that led to a painless death within just a few hours. We consulted eminent zoologists and toxicologists and they said that a snake bite would have been too uncertain and taken too long," Professor Schaefer added.
I. READING COMPREHENSION
1.- Are the following statements TRUE or FALSE? Copy the evidence from the text. No marks are given for only TRUE or FALSE.
a) Professor Schaefer's new hypothesis about the cause of Cleopatra's death was made known through a specialized magazine.
- FALSE: (...) eminent zoologists and toxicologists (...) said that a snake bite would have been too uncertain and taken too long.
2.- In your own words and based on the ideas in the text, answer the following questions. Do not copy from the text.
a) Why is Mark Antony mentioned in the text?
- A snake bite would have caused an extreme suffering to Cleopatra, disfiguring her beauty. She has always been proud of it, that’s why Professor Schafer finds this method improbable.
II. USE OF ENGLISH
3.- Find the words or phrases in the text that mean:
- a) the same (paragraph 1): likewise
- b) represented (paragraph 1): portrayed
- c) proof (paragraph 2): evidence
- d) drink (paragraph 3): cocktail
4.- Complete the following sentences. Use the appropriate form of the word in brackets when given.
- a) The popular image we have of Cleopatra is that of a beautiful queen who/that was adored by Roman politicians and generals.
- b) An old coin with the image of Cleopatra shows/showed (show) that she may not have been as attractive as/as was first thought.
- c) The coin, which was hidden (hide) in a bank vault, accidentally fell on/to/onto the floor of the bank after a robbery.
- d) Shakespeare wrote (write) his tragedy Antony and Cleopatra in 1608, but it was first printed fifteen years later (late).