Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe (p. 11), edited by Joaneath Spicer ; contributions by Natalie Zemon Davis, Kate Lowe, Joaneath Spicer, Ben Vinson III ; The Walters Art Museum.
The Ptolemies married within their own (Greek) family, but Cleopatra’s father’s mother was apparently an Egyptian from elite circles, so Cleopatra had Egyptian blood. She was the first of her dynasty to study and use the Egyptian language.
See Susan Walker and Peter Higgs, eds., Cleopatra of Egypt: From History to Myth (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2001), especially the citation from Plutarch on her appearance (210), and portraits now thought to be her, most prominently no. 198, a marble portrait from the Staatliche Museum, Berlin, which is consistent with the summary portraits on her coins. Günther Höbl, A History of the Ptolemaic Empire (London: Rout- ledge, 2001), 223, 231–56.
[mod note] So now maybe people will stop asking me about this…