What is A. C. Bradley's opinion of how Shakespeare portrays Cleopatra's character in Antony and Cleopatra?

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To distill the opinion of A.C. Bradley, one of the most influential Shakespearean scholars of the late Victorian era, on the character of Cleopatra (as revealed in his Oxford Lecture on Antony and Cleopatra), she ranks as one of the playwright's greatest creations, on par with Hamlet and Falstaff. Yet she languishes through the early acts of the play. Bradley apparently doubts that Antony and Cleopatra should even be termed a tragedy, for a couple of reasons: neither Antony nor Cleopatra exhibit the nobility of character nor the reflective, inwardly searching nature that normally defines the role of a tragic hero; and the diffuse, episodic structure of the work has more in common with the poet's history plays than with the forceful linear structure of the tragedies.

Rather than a tragedy, it might be more accurate to describe the form of this play as "Shakespeare noir," a familiar tale of a hot-blooded man led to his doom by a femme fatale of overpowering...

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