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In
Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an Attitude (psyc ...
, the Trojan War was waged against the city of
Troy Troy (Greek language, Greek: Τροία) or Ilium (Greek language, Greek: Ίλιον) was an ancient city located at Hisarlik in present-day Turkey, south-west of Çanakkale. It is known as the setting for the Greek mythology, Greek myth of the ...

Troy
by the Achaeans (
Greeks The Greeks or Hellenes (; el, Έλληνες, ''Éllines'' ) are an ethnic group An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people A people is any plurality of person A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has cer ...

Greeks
) after
Paris Paris () is the Capital city, capital and List of communes in France with over 20,000 inhabitants, most populous city of France, with an estimated population of 2,175,601 residents , in an area of more than . Since the 17th century, Paris ha ...
of Troy took
Helen Helen may refer to: People * Helen of Troy, in Greek mythology, the most beautiful woman in the world * Helen (actress) (born 1938), Indian actress * Helen (given name), a given name (including a list of people with the name) Places * Helen, Ge ...

Helen
from her husband
Menelaus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...

Menelaus
, king of
Sparta Sparta (Doric Greek Doric or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an . Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern as well as in , , , , , some islands in the southern and some cities on the south east coast of ...

Sparta
. The war is one of the most important events in Greek mythology and has been narrated through many works of
Greek literature Greek literature () dates back from the ancient Greek literature Ancient Greek literature is literature written in the Ancient Greek language from the earliest texts until the time of the Byzantine Empire. The earliest surviving works of anci ...
, most notably
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
's ''
Iliad The ''Iliad'' (; grc, Ἰλιάς, Iliás, ; sometimes referred to as the ''Song of Ilion'' or ''Song of Ilium'') is an in , traditionally attributed to . Usually considered to have been written down circa the 8th century BC, the ''Iliad'' i ...

Iliad
''. The core of the ''Iliad'' (Books II – XXIII) describes a period of four days and two nights in the tenth year of the decade-long
siege A siege is a military blockade of a city, or fortress, with the intent of conquering by attrition, or a well-prepared assault. This derives from la, sedere, lit=to sit. Siege warfare is a form of constant, low-intensity conflict characteri ...

siege
of Troy; the ''
Odyssey The ''Odyssey'' (; grc, Ὀδύσσεια, Odýsseia, ) is one of two major ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí ...
'' describes the journey home of
Odysseus Odysseus ( ; grc-gre, Ὀδυσσεύς, Ὀδυσεύς, OdysseúsOdyseús, ), also known by the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken ...

Odysseus
, one of the war's heroes. Other parts of the war are described in a cycle of epic poems, which have survived through fragments. Episodes from the war provided material for
Greek tragedy Greek tragedy is a form of theatre from Ancient Greece and Anatolia. It reached its most significant form in Athens in the 5th century BC, the works of which are sometimes called Attic tragedy. Greek tragedy is widely believed to be an extension ...
and other works of Greek literature, and for
Roman Roman or Romans most often refers to: *, the capital city of Italy *, Roman civilization from 8th century BC to 5th century AD *, the people of ancient Rome *', shortened to ''Romans'', a letter in the New Testament of the Christian Bible Roman ...
poets including
Virgil Publius Vergilius Maro (; traditional dates 15 October 7021 September 19 BC), usually called Virgil or Vergil ( ) in English, was an ancient Rome, ancient Roman poet of the Augustan literature (ancient Rome), Augustan period. He composed three ...

Virgil
and
Ovid Pūblius Ovidius Nāsō (; 20 March 43 BC – 17/18 AD), known in English as Ovid ( ), was a Augustan literature (ancient Rome), Roman poet who lived during the reign of Augustus. He was a contemporary of the older Virgil and Horace, with whom ...

Ovid
. The
ancient Greeks Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of Classical Antiquity, antiquity ( AD 600). This era was ...
believed that Troy was located near the
Dardanelles satellite in September 2006. The body of water on the left is the Aegean Sea, while the one on the upper right is the Sea of Marmara. The Dardanelles is the tapered waterway running diagonally between the two seas, from the northeast to the ...
and that the Trojan War was a historical event of the 13th or 12th century BC, but by the mid-19th century AD, both the war and the city were widely seen as non-historical. In 1868, however, the German
archaeologist Archaeology or archeology is the study of human activity through the recovery and analysis of material culture. Archaeology is often considered a branch of socio-cultural anthropology, but archaeologists also draw from biological, geological, ...
Heinrich Schliemann Heinrich Schliemann (; 6 January 1822 – 26 December 1890) was a German German(s) may refer to: Common uses * of or related to Germany * Germans, Germanic ethnic group, citizens of Germany or people of German ancestry * For citizens of Germa ...

Heinrich Schliemann
met
Frank Calvert Image:Frank calvert portrait.png, 175px, Frank Calvert Frank Calvert (1828–1908) was an English expatriate who was a consular official in the eastern Mediterranean region and an amateur archaeologist. He began exploratory excavations on the mou ...
, who convinced Schliemann that Troy was a real city at what is now
Hisarlik Hisarlik (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Greece ( el, Ε ...
in
Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia Anatolia,, tr, Anadolu Yarımadası), and the Anatolian plateau. also known as Asia Minor, is a large peninsula in Western Asia an ...
. On the basis of excavations conducted by Schliemann and others, this claim is now accepted by most scholars. Whether there is any historical reality behind the Trojan War remains an open question. Many scholars believe that there is a historical core to the tale, though this may simply mean that the Homeric stories are a fusion of various tales of
siege A siege is a military blockade of a city, or fortress, with the intent of conquering by attrition, or a well-prepared assault. This derives from la, sedere, lit=to sit. Siege warfare is a form of constant, low-intensity conflict characteri ...

siege
s and expeditions by
Mycenaean Greeks Mycenaean Greece (or the Mycenaean civilization) was the last phase of the Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, and other early features ...
during the
Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, and other early features of urban civilization. The Bronze Age is the second principal period of the Three-age sys ...
. Those who believe that the stories of the Trojan War are derived from a specific historical conflict usually date it to the 12th or 11th century BC, often preferring the dates given by
Eratosthenes Eratosthenes of Cyrene (; grc-gre, Ἐρατοσθένης ;  – ) was a Greek polymath A polymath ( el, πολυμαθής, , "having learned much"; la, homo universalis, "universal human") is an individual whose knowledge spans a ...

Eratosthenes
, 1194–1184 BC, which roughly correspond to archaeological evidence of a catastrophic burning of
Troy VII Troy VII is an archaeological layer at Hisarlik which corresponds to the city of Troy from roughly 1300 to 950 BC. It was a walled city comprising a citadel surrounded by a large lower town, described by Manfred Korfmann as "by the standards of its ...
, and the
Late Bronze Age collapse The Late Bronze Age collapse was a transition period in a large area covering much of Southeast Europe, West Asia and North Africa North Africa is a region encompassing the northern portion of the African continent. There is no singularly ac ...
.


Sources

The events of the Trojan War are found in many works of
Greek literature Greek literature () dates back from the ancient Greek literature Ancient Greek literature is literature written in the Ancient Greek language from the earliest texts until the time of the Byzantine Empire. The earliest surviving works of anci ...
and depicted in numerous works of
Greek art Greek art began in the Cycladic The Cyclades ( el, Κυκλάδες ) are an island group An archipelago ( ), sometimes called an island group or island chain, is a chain, cluster or collection of islands, or sometimes a sea containing ...

Greek art
. There is no single, authoritative text which tells the entire events of the war. Instead, the story is assembled from a variety of sources, some of which report contradictory versions of the events. The most important literary sources are the two epic poems traditionally credited to
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
, the ''
Iliad The ''Iliad'' (; grc, Ἰλιάς, Iliás, ; sometimes referred to as the ''Song of Ilion'' or ''Song of Ilium'') is an in , traditionally attributed to . Usually considered to have been written down circa the 8th century BC, the ''Iliad'' i ...

Iliad
'' and the ''
Odyssey The ''Odyssey'' (; grc, Ὀδύσσεια, Odýsseia, ) is one of two major ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí ...
'', composed sometime between the 9th and 6th centuries BC. Each poem narrates only a part of the war. The ''Iliad'' covers a short period in the last year of the siege of Troy, while the ''Odyssey'' concerns Odysseus's return to his home island of
Ithaca Ithaca, Ithaki or Ithaka (; Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population ...

Ithaca
following the sack of Troy and contains several flashbacks to particular episodes in the war. Other parts of the Trojan War were told in the poems of the
Epic Cycle The Epic Cycle ( el, Ἐπικὸς Κύκλος, ''Epikos Kyklos'') was a collection of Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the used in and the from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the follow ...
, also known as the Cyclic Epics: the ''
Cypria The ''Cypria'' ( grc-gre, Κύπρια ''Kúpria''; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Lati ...
'', ''
Aethiopis The ''Aethiopis'' , also spelled ''Aithiopis'' (Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its popul ...
'', ''
Little Iliad The ''Little Iliad'' (Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is ap ...
'', ''
Iliou Persis The ''Iliupersis'' (Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is ap ...
'', ''
Nostoi The ''Nostoi'' ( el, Νόστοι, ''Nostoi'', "Returns"), also known as ''Returns'' or ''Returns of the Greeks'', is a lost Epic poetry, epic of ancient Greek literature. It was one of the Epic Cycle, that is, the Trojan cycle, which told the enti ...
'', and ''
Telegony The ''Telegony'' (Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 mil ...
''. Though these poems survive only in fragments, their content is known from a summary included in
Proclus Proclus Lycius (; 410/411/ 7 Feb. or 8 Feb. 412 –17 April 485 AD), called Proclus the Successor, Proclus the Platonic Successor, or Proclus of Athens (Greek: Προκλου Διαδοχου ''Próklos Diádochos'', ''"''in some Manuscript ...
' ''
Chrestomathy Chrestomathy ( ; from the Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the following ...
''. The authorship of the Cyclic Epics is uncertain. It is generally thought that the poems were written down in the 7th and 6th century BC, after the composition of the Homeric poems, though it is widely believed that they were based on earlier traditions. Both the Homeric epics and the Epic Cycle take origin from
oral tradition Oral tradition, or oral lore, is a form of human communication Human communication, or anthroposemiotics, is the field dedicated to understanding how human Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most populous and widespread species of prima ...
. Even after the composition of the ''Iliad'', ''Odyssey'', and the Cyclic Epics, the myths of the Trojan War were passed on orally in many genres of poetry and through non-poetic storytelling. Events and details of the story that are only found in later authors may have been passed on through oral tradition and could be as old as the Homeric poems. Visual art, such as
vase painting Pottery is the process and the products of forming vessels and other objects with clay Clay is a type of fine-grained natural soil material containing clay minerals. Clays develop plasticity (physics), plasticity when wet, due to a molecula ...
, was another medium in which myths of the Trojan War circulated. In later ages
playwright A playwright or dramatist is a person who writes play Play most commonly refers to: * Play (activity), an activity done for enjoyment * Play (theatre), a work of drama Play may refer also to: Computers and technology * Google Play, a digital c ...
s,
historians This is a list of historians only for those with a biographical entry in Wikipedia. Major chroniclers and annalists are included. Names are listed by the person's historical periodHuman history is commonly divided into three main Era, eras — Anci ...
, and other intellectuals would create works inspired by the Trojan War. The three great tragedians of
Athens , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Clicking on an image in the picture causes the browser to load the appropriate article. rect 15 15 985 460 Acropolis of Athens rect 15 475 48 ...

Athens
Aeschylus Aeschylus (, ; grc-gre, Αἰσχύλος ''Aiskhylos'', ; c. 525/524 – c. 456/455 BC) was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kin ...
,
Sophocles Sophocles (; grc, Σοφοκλῆς, ; 497/6 – winter 406/5 BC)Sommerstein (2002), p. 41. is one of three ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , ...

Sophocles
, and
Euripides Euripides (; grc, Εὐριπίδης ''Eurīpídēs'', ; ) was a tragedian Tragedy (from the grc-gre, τραγῳδία, ''tragōidia'', ''tragōidia'') is a form of drama based on human suffering and, mainly, the terrible or sorrowfu ...

Euripides
—wrote a number of dramas that portray episodes from the Trojan War. Among Roman writers the most important is the 1st century BC poet
Virgil Publius Vergilius Maro (; traditional dates 15 October 7021 September 19 BC), usually called Virgil or Vergil ( ) in English, was an ancient Rome, ancient Roman poet of the Augustan literature (ancient Rome), Augustan period. He composed three ...

Virgil
; in Book 2 of his ''
Aeneid The ''Aeneid'' ( ; la, Aenē̆is ) is a Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the p ...
'',
Aeneas In Greco-Roman mythology, Aeneas (, ; from Greek language, Greek: Αἰνείας, ''Aineíās'') was a Trojan hero, the son of the Trojan prince Anchises and the goddess Aphrodite (equivalent to the Roman Venus (mythology), Venus). His father ...
narrates the sack of Troy.


Legend

Traditionally, the Trojan War arose from a sequence of events beginning with a quarrel between the goddesses
Hera Hera (; grc-gre, Ἥρα, Hḗrā; grc, Ἥρη, Hḗrē, label=none in Ionic Ionic or Ionian may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Ionic meter, a poetic metre in ancient Greek and Latin poetry * Ionian mode, a musical mode or a diatonic s ...

Hera
,
Athena Athena or Athene, often given the epithet An epithet (, ) is a byname, or a descriptive term (word or phrase), accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied ...

Athena
, and
Aphrodite Aphrodite; , , ) is an ancient Greek goddess associated with love Love encompasses a range of strong and positive emotion Emotions are mental state, psychological states brought on by neurophysiology, neurophysiological changes, ...

Aphrodite
. Eris, the goddess of discord, was not invited to the wedding of
Peleus by the Edinburgh Painter, c. 500 BC, (National Archaeological Museum of Athens The National Archaeological Museum ( el, Εθνικό Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο) in Athens houses some of the most important artifacts from a variety o ...
and
Thetis Thetis (; grc-gre, Θέτις ), is a figure from Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, ori ...

Thetis
, and so arrived bearing a gift: a
golden apple The golden apple is an element that appears in various national and ethnic folk legends or fairy tales. Recurring themes depict a hero (for example Hercules or Făt-Frumos) retrieving the golden apple (symbolism), apples hidden or stolen by a monst ...
, inscribed "for the fairest". Each of the goddesses claimed to be the "fairest", and the rightful owner of the apple. They submitted the judgment to a shepherd they encountered tending his flock. Each of the goddesses promised the young man a boon in return for his favour: power, wisdom, or love. The youth—in fact Paris, a Trojan prince who had been raised in the countryside—chose love, and awarded the apple to Aphrodite. As his reward, Aphrodite caused Helen, the Queen of
Sparta Sparta (Doric Greek Doric or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an . Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern as well as in , , , , , some islands in the southern and some cities on the south east coast of ...

Sparta
, and most beautiful of all women, to fall in love with Paris. But the
judgement of Paris The Judgement of Paris is a story from Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmol ...
earned him the ire of both Hera and Athena, and when Helen left her husband,
Menelaus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...

Menelaus
, the Spartan king, for Paris of Troy, Menelaus called upon all the kings and princes of Greece to wage war upon Troy. Menelaus' brother
Agamemnon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
, king of
Mycenae Mycenae ( ; grc, Μυκῆναι or , ''Mykē̂nai'' or ''Mykḗnē'') is an archaeological site near Mykines, Greece, Mykines in Argolis, north-eastern Peloponnese, Greece. It is located about south-west of Athens; north of Argos, Peloponne ...

Mycenae
, led an expedition of Achaean troops to Troy and besieged the city for ten years because of Paris' insult. After the deaths of many heroes, including the Achaeans
Achilles In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of s originally told by the , and a of . These stories concern the and , the lives and activities of , , and , and the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own and practices. ...

Achilles
and
Ajax Ajax (also AJAX ; short for "Asynchronous JavaScript JavaScript (), often abbreviated JS, is a programming language A programming language is a formal language comprising a Instruction set architecture, set of instructions that produ ...
, and the Trojans
Hector 250px, The bronze coin struck in 350–300 BC in Ophryneion, which was considered to be the site of the Tomb of Hector. Obverse depicts bearded Hector wearing triple crested helmet and reverse depicts infant Dionysos. In Greek mythology and R ...

Hector
and Paris, the city fell to the ruse of the
Trojan Horse The Trojan Horse was the wooden horse used by the Greeks, during the Trojan War, to enter the city of Troy and win the war. There is no Trojan Horse in Homer's ''Iliad'', with the poem ending before the war is concluded. But in the ''Aeneid'' ...

Trojan Horse
. The Achaeans slaughtered the Trojans, except for some of the women and children whom they kept or sold as slaves and desecrated the temples, thus earning the gods' wrath. Few of the Achaeans returned safely to their homes and many founded colonies in distant shores. The
Romans Roman or Romans usually refers to: *Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Lazio, ...
later traced their origin to
Aeneas In Greco-Roman mythology, Aeneas (, ; from Greek language, Greek: Αἰνείας, ''Aineíās'') was a Trojan hero, the son of the Trojan prince Anchises and the goddess Aphrodite (equivalent to the Roman Venus (mythology), Venus). His father ...
, Aphrodite's son and one of the Trojans, who was said to have led the surviving Trojans to modern-day
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...

Italy
. The following summary of the Trojan War follows the order of events as given in Proclus' summary, along with the ''Iliad'', ''Odyssey'', and ''Aeneid'', supplemented with details drawn from other authors.


Origins of the war


Plan of Zeus

According to Greek mythology,
Zeus Zeus or , , ; grc, Δῐός, ''Diós'', label=genitive In grammar In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language, meaning that it is a comprehensive, systematic, objective, and precise study of language. Ling ...

Zeus
had become king of the gods by overthrowing his father
Cronus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of s originally told by the , and a of . These stories concern the and , the lives and activities of , , and , and the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own and practice ...
; Cronus in turn had overthrown his father
Uranus Uranus is the seventh planet from the Sun. Its name is a reference to the Greek god of the sky, Uranus, who, according to Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and ...
. Zeus was not faithful to his wife and sister
Hera Hera (; grc-gre, Ἥρα, Hḗrā; grc, Ἥρη, Hḗrē, label=none in Ionic Ionic or Ionian may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Ionic meter, a poetic metre in ancient Greek and Latin poetry * Ionian mode, a musical mode or a diatonic s ...

Hera
, and had many relationships from which many children were born. Since Zeus believed that there were too many people populating the earth, he envisioned
Momus Momus (; Ancient Greek: Μῶμος ''Momos'') in Greek mythology was the personification of satire and mockery, two stories about whom figure among Aesop's Fables. During the Renaissance, several literary works used him as a mouthpiece for their ...
or
Themis In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A bel ...

Themis
, who was to use the Trojan War as a means to depopulate the Earth, especially of his demigod descendants. These can be supported by Hesiod's account:
Now all the gods were divided through strife; for at that very time Zeus who thunders on high was meditating marvelous deeds, even to mingle storm and tempest over the boundless earth, and already he was hastening to make an utter end of the race of mortal men, declaring that he would destroy the lives of the demi-gods, that the children of the gods should not mate with wretched mortals, seeing their fate with their own eyes; but that the blessed gods henceforth even as aforetime should have their living and their habitations apart from men. But on those who were born of immortals and of mankind verily Zeus laid toil and sorrow upon sorrow.


Judgement of Paris

Zeus came to learn from either
Themis In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A bel ...

Themis
or
Prometheus In , Prometheus (; , , possibly meaning "")Smith"Prometheus". is a god of fire. Prometheus is best known for defying the gods by from them and giving it to humanity in the form of technology, knowledge, and more generally, . In some versions ...

Prometheus
, after
Heracles Heracles ( ; grc-gre, Ἡρακλῆς, , glory/fame of Hera Hera (; grc-gre, Ἥρα, Hḗrā; grc, Ἥρη, Hḗrē, label=none in Ionic Ionic or Ionian may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Ionic meter, a poetic metre in anci ...

Heracles
had released him from
Caucasus The Caucasus (), or Caucasia (), is a region spanning Europe and Asia. It is situated between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea and mainly occupied by Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia (country), Georgia, and parts of Southern Russia. It is home to ...
, that, like his father Cronus, he would be overthrown by one of his sons. Another prophecy stated that a son of the sea-nymph
Thetis Thetis (; grc-gre, Θέτις ), is a figure from Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, ori ...

Thetis
, with whom Zeus fell in love after gazing upon her in the oceans off the Greek coast, would become greater than his father. Possibly for one or both of these reasons, Thetis was betrothed to an elderly human king,
Peleus by the Edinburgh Painter, c. 500 BC, (National Archaeological Museum of Athens The National Archaeological Museum ( el, Εθνικό Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο) in Athens houses some of the most important artifacts from a variety o ...
son of
Aeacus Image:Aeacus telemon.jpg, 339x339px, ''Aeacus and Telamon'' by Jean-Michel Moreau le Jeune.Aeacus (; also spelled Eacus; Ancient Greek: Αἰακός) was a Greek mythology, mythological king of the island of Aegina in the Saronic Gulf. Family ...
, either upon Zeus' orders, or because she wished to please Hera, who had raised her. All of the gods were invited to Peleus and Thetis' wedding and brought many gifts, except Eris (the goddess of discord), who was stopped at the door by
Hermes Hermes (; grc-gre, Ἑρμῆς) is an Olympian deity in ancient Greek religion and Greek mythology, mythology. Hermes is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, mercha ...

Hermes
, on Zeus' order. Insulted, she threw from the door a gift of her own:Hyginus, ''Fabulae'' 92. a
golden apple The golden apple is an element that appears in various national and ethnic folk legends or fairy tales. Recurring themes depict a hero (for example Hercules or Făt-Frumos) retrieving the golden apple (symbolism), apples hidden or stolen by a monst ...
(το μήλον της έριδος) on which was inscribed the word καλλίστῃ ''Kallistēi'' ("To the fairest"). The apple was claimed by
Hera Hera (; grc-gre, Ἥρα, Hḗrā; grc, Ἥρη, Hḗrē, label=none in Ionic Ionic or Ionian may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Ionic meter, a poetic metre in ancient Greek and Latin poetry * Ionian mode, a musical mode or a diatonic s ...

Hera
,
Athena Athena or Athene, often given the epithet An epithet (, ) is a byname, or a descriptive term (word or phrase), accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied ...

Athena
, and
Aphrodite Aphrodite; , , ) is an ancient Greek goddess associated with love Love encompasses a range of strong and positive emotion Emotions are mental state, psychological states brought on by neurophysiology, neurophysiological changes, ...

Aphrodite
. They quarreled bitterly over it, and none of the other gods would venture an opinion favoring one, for fear of earning the enmity of the other two. Eventually, Zeus ordered
Hermes Hermes (; grc-gre, Ἑρμῆς) is an Olympian deity in ancient Greek religion and Greek mythology, mythology. Hermes is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, mercha ...

Hermes
to lead the three goddesses to Paris, a prince of
Troy Troy (Greek language, Greek: Τροία) or Ilium (Greek language, Greek: Ίλιον) was an ancient city located at Hisarlik in present-day Turkey, south-west of Çanakkale. It is known as the setting for the Greek mythology, Greek myth of the ...

Troy
, who, unaware of his ancestry, was being raised as a
shepherd A shepherd or sheepherder is a person who tends, herds, feeds, or guards herds of sheep Sheep (''Ovis aries'') are quadruped The zebra is a quadruped. Quadrupedalism is a form of terrestrial locomotion where a tetrapod Tetrapods ( ...

shepherd
in
Mount Ida In Greek mythology, two sacred mountains are called Mount Ida, the "Mountain of the Goddess": Mount Ida (Crete), Mount Ida in Crete, and Mount Ida (Turkey), Mount Ida in the ancient Troad region of western Anatolia (in modern-day Turkey), which wa ...

Mount Ida
, because of a
prophecy A prophecy is a message that is claimed by a person (typically a prophet In religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whethe ...
that he would be the downfall of Troy. After bathing in the spring of Ida, the goddesses appeared to him naked, either for the sake of winning or at Paris' request. Paris was unable to decide among them, so the goddesses resorted to bribes. Athena offered Paris wisdom, skill in battle, and the abilities of the greatest warriors; Hera offered him political power and control of all of
Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere, Eastern and Northern Hemisphere, Northern Hemisphere of the Earth, Hemispheres. It shares the continental landmass of Eurasia with the cont ...

Asia
; and Aphrodite offered him the love of the most beautiful woman in the world,
Helen of Sparta
Helen of Sparta
. Paris awarded the apple to Aphrodite, and, after several adventures, returned to Troy, where he was recognized by his royal family. Peleus and Thetis bore a son, whom they named
Achilles In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of s originally told by the , and a of . These stories concern the and , the lives and activities of , , and , and the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own and practices. ...

Achilles
. It was foretold that he would either die of old age after an uneventful life, or die young in a battlefield and gain immortality through poetry. Furthermore, when Achilles was nine years old,
Calchas Calchas (; grc, Κάλχας, ''Kalkhas'') is an Argive mantis, or "Divination, seer," dated to the Age of Legend, which is an aspect of Greek mythology. Some myths are patently fictional, but others, such as the main characters of the ''Iliad'' ...
had prophesied that Troy could not again fall without his help.Apollodorus, ''Library'' 3.13.8. A number of sources credit Thetis with attempting to make Achilles immortal when he was an infant. Some of these state that she held him over fire every night to burn away his mortal parts and rubbed him with
ambrosia In the ancient Greek mythology, Greek myths, ''ambrosia'' (, grc, ἀμβροσία, "immortality") is the food or drink of the Greek gods, often depicted as conferring longevity or immortality upon whoever consumed it. It was brought to the gods ...
during the day, but Peleus discovered her actions and stopped her. According to some versions of this story, Thetis had already killed several sons in this manner, and Peleus' action therefore saved his son's life. Other sources state that Thetis bathed Achilles in the
Styx In Greek mythology, Styx (; grc, Στύξ ) is a deity and a river that forms the boundary between Gaia, Earth (Gaia) and the Greek underworld, Underworld. The rivers Acheron, Cocytus, Lethe, Phlegethon, and Styx all converge at the centre of the ...
, the river that runs to the
underworld upThe legs of the god seven_realms_of_the_Hindus.html" "title="Patala#Hinduism.html" "title="Cosmic_Man.html" ;"title="Vishnu as the Cosmic Man">Vishnu as the Cosmic Man depict earth and the Patala#Hinduism">seven realms of the Hindus">Hind ...
, making him invulnerable wherever he was touched by the water. Because she had held him by the heel, it was not immersed during the bathing and thus the heel remained mortal and vulnerable to injury (hence the expression "
Achilles' heel An Achilles heel is a weakness in spite of overall strength, which can lead to downfall. While the mythological origin refers to a physical vulnerability, idiomatic references to other attributes or qualities that can lead to downfall are common. ...

Achilles' heel
" for an isolated weakness). He grew up to be the greatest of all mortal warriors. After Calchas' prophecy, Thetis hid Achilles in
Skyros Skyros ( el, Σκύρος, ), in some historical contexts Latinized Latinisation or Latinization can refer to: * Latinisation of names, the practice of rendering a non-Latin name in a Latin style * Latinisation in the Soviet Union, the campaign i ...

Skyros
at the court of King
Lycomedes In Greek mythology, Lycomedes ( grc, Λυκομήδης), also known as Lycurgus, was the most prominent king of the Dolopia, Dolopians in the island of Skyros, Scyros near Euboea during the Trojan War. Family Lycomedes was the father of a num ...
, where he was disguised as a girl. At a crucial point in the war, she assists her son by providing weapons divinely forged by
Hephaestus Hephaestus (; wikt:Hephaestus#Alternative forms, eight spellings; grc-gre, Ἥφαιστος, Hḗphaistos) is the Greek god of blacksmiths, metalworking, carpenters, craftsmen, artisans, sculpture, sculptors, metallurgy, Fire (classical el ...
(see
below Below may refer to: *Earth *Ground (disambiguation) *Soil *Floor *Bottom (disambiguation) *Less than *Temperatures below freezing *Hell or underworld People with the surname *Fred Below (1926–1988), American blues drummer *Fritz von Below (1853 ...
).


Elopement of Paris and Helen

The most beautiful woman in the world was Helen, one of the daughters of
Tyndareus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief ...
, King of Sparta. Her mother was
Leda Leda may refer to: Mythology * Leda (mythology), queen of Sparta and mother of Helen of Troy in Greek mythology Places * Leda, Western Australia, a suburb of Perth, Western Australia * Leda makeshift settlement, Bangladesh, a refugee camp fo ...
, who had been either raped or seduced by Zeus in the form of a
swan Swans are birds of the family (biology), family Anatidae within the genus ''Cygnus''. The swans' closest relatives include the goose, geese and ducks. Swans are grouped with the closely related geese in the subfamily Anserinae where they form th ...

swan
. Accounts differ over which of Leda's four children, two pairs of twins, were fathered by Zeus and which by Tyndareus. However, Helen is usually credited as Zeus' daughter, and sometimes
Nemesis In ancient Greek religion Ancient Greek religion encompasses the collection of beliefs, rituals, and Greek mythology, mythology originating in ancient Greece in the form of both popular public religion and Cult (religious practice), cult pract ...
is credited as her mother. Helen had scores of suitors, and her father was unwilling to choose one for fear the others would retaliate violently. Finally, one of the suitors,
Odysseus Odysseus ( ; grc-gre, Ὀδυσσεύς, Ὀδυσεύς, OdysseúsOdyseús, ), also known by the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken ...

Odysseus
of
Ithaca Ithaca, Ithaki or Ithaka (; Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population ...

Ithaca
, proposed a plan to solve the dilemma. In exchange for Tyndareus' support of his own suit towards
Penelope Penelope ( ; el, Πηνελόπεια, ''Pēnelópeia'', or el, Πηνελόπη, ''Pēnelópē'') is a character in Homer's ''Odyssey.'' She was the queen of Ithaca and was the daughter of Spartan king Icarius (Spartan), Icarius and naiad Perib ...

Penelope
, he suggested that Tyndareus require all of Helen's suitors to promise that they would defend the marriage of Helen, regardless of whom he chose. The suitors duly swore the required oath on the severed pieces of a horse, although not without a certain amount of grumbling. Tyndareus chose
Menelaus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...

Menelaus
. Menelaus was a political choice on her father's part. He had wealth and power. He had humbly not petitioned for her himself, but instead sent his brother
Agamemnon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
on his behalf. He had promised Aphrodite a
hecatomb In ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of Classical Antiquity, antiquity ( AD ...
, a sacrifice of 100 oxen, if he won Helen, but forgot about it and earned her wrath. Menelaus inherited Tyndareus' throne of Sparta with Helen as his queen when her brothers,
Castor and Pollux Castor; grc, Κάστωρ, Kástōr, beaver. and Pollux. (or Polydeukes). are twin half-brothers in Greek mythology, Greek and Roman mythology, known together as the Dioscuri.; grc, Διόσκουροι, Dióskouroi, sons of Zeus, links=no, f ...

Castor and Pollux
, became gods, and when Agamemnon married Helen's sister
Clytemnestra Clytemnestra (; grc-gre, Κλυταιμνήστρα, ''Klytaimnḗstrā'', ), in Greek mythology, was the wife of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, and the sister of Helen of Troy. In Aeschylus' ''Oresteia'', she murders Agamemnon – said by Euripid ...
and took back the throne of Mycenae.
Paris Paris () is the Capital city, capital and List of communes in France with over 20,000 inhabitants, most populous city of France, with an estimated population of 2,175,601 residents , in an area of more than . Since the 17th century, Paris ha ...

Paris
, under the guise of a supposed diplomatic mission, went to Sparta to get Helen and bring her back to Troy. Before Helen could look up to see him enter the palace, she was shot with an arrow from
Eros In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...

Eros
, otherwise known as
Cupid In classical mythology Classical mythology, classical Greco-Roman mythology, Greek and Roman mythology or Greco-Roman mythology is both the body of and the study of myths from the ancient Greeks and ancient Romans as they are used or transfo ...
, and fell in love with Paris when she saw him, as promised by Aphrodite. Menelaus had left for
Crete Crete ( el, Κρήτη, translit=, Modern Modern may refer to: History *Modern history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed by archaeology Archaeology or archeology ...

Crete
Proclus Chrestomathy 1 to bury his uncle, Crateus. According to one account, Hera, still jealous over the judgement of Paris, sent a storm. The storm caused the lovers to land in
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identi ...

Egypt
, where the gods replaced Helen with a likeness of her made of clouds,
Nephele In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
. The myth of Helen being switched is attributed to the 6th century BC Sicilian poet
Stesichorus Stesichorus (; grc-gre, Στησίχορος, ''Stēsichoros''; c. 630 – 555 BC) was a Greek lyric poet Lyric poetry is a formal type of poetry which expresses personal emotions or feelings, typically spoken in the first person. It is not eq ...

Stesichorus
, while for Homer the Helen in Troy was one and the same. The ship then landed in
Sidon Sidon ( ), known locally as Sayda or Saida ( ar, صيدا), is the third-largest city in Lebanon Lebanon ( , ar, لُبْنَان, translit=lubnān, ), officially the Republic of Lebanon or the Lebanese Republic, is a country in Western A ...

Sidon
. Paris, fearful of getting caught, spent some time there and then sailed to Troy. Paris' abduction of Helen had several precedents. Io was taken from
Mycenae Mycenae ( ; grc, Μυκῆναι or , ''Mykē̂nai'' or ''Mykḗnē'') is an archaeological site near Mykines, Greece, Mykines in Argolis, north-eastern Peloponnese, Greece. It is located about south-west of Athens; north of Argos, Peloponne ...

Mycenae
,
Europa Europa may refer to: Places *Europe Europe is a continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven regions are commonly regard ...
was taken from
Phoenicia Phoenicia () was an ancient Ancient history is the aggregate of past eventsWordNet Search – 3 ...
,
Jason Jason ( ; ) was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek ...

Jason
took
Medea In Greek mythology, Medea (; grc, Μήδεια, ''Mēdeia'' perhaps implying "planner / schemer") is the daughter of Aeëtes, King Aeëtes of Colchis, a niece of Circe and the granddaughter of the sun god Helios. Medea figures in the myth of Ja ...

Medea
from
Colchis In pre-Hellenistic The Hellenistic period spans the period of Mediterranean history The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the nor ...

Colchis
, and the Trojan princess
Hesione In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belie ...
had been taken by
Heracles Heracles ( ; grc-gre, Ἡρακλῆς, , glory/fame of Hera Hera (; grc-gre, Ἥρα, Hḗrā; grc, Ἥρη, Hḗrē, label=none in Ionic Ionic or Ionian may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Ionic meter, a poetic metre in anci ...

Heracles
, who gave her to
Telamon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief ...
of
SalamisSalamis may refer to : Places and battles * Salamis Island in the Saronic Gulf of the Aegean Sea, near Athens, Greece ** Salamina (city), former municipality on Salamis Island ** Salamis Naval Base, a Greek naval base on Salamis Island ** Battle o ...
. According to
Herodotus Herodotus ( ; grc, Ἡρόδοτος, Hēródotos, ; BC) was an Classical Greece, ancient Greek writer, geographer, and historian born in the Greek city of Halicarnassus, part of the Achaemenid Empire, Persian Empire (now Bodrum, Turkey). He ...
, Paris was emboldened by these examples to steal himself a wife from Greece, and expected no retribution, since there had been none in the other cases.


Gathering of Achaean forces and the first expedition

According to Homer, Menelaus and his ally, Odysseus, traveled to Troy, where they unsuccessfully sought to recover Helen by diplomatic means. Menelaus then asked Agamemnon to uphold his oath, which, as one of Helen's suitors, was to defend her marriage regardless of which suitor had been chosen. Agamemnon agreed and sent emissaries to all the Achaean kings and princes to call them to observe their oaths and retrieve Helen.


Odysseus and Achilles

Since Menelaus's wedding,
Odysseus Odysseus ( ; grc-gre, Ὀδυσσεύς, Ὀδυσεύς, OdysseúsOdyseús, ), also known by the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken ...

Odysseus
had married
Penelope Penelope ( ; el, Πηνελόπεια, ''Pēnelópeia'', or el, Πηνελόπη, ''Pēnelópē'') is a character in Homer's ''Odyssey.'' She was the queen of Ithaca and was the daughter of Spartan king Icarius (Spartan), Icarius and naiad Perib ...

Penelope
and fathered a son,
Telemachus Telemachus ( ; Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the following periods: M ...
. In order to avoid the war, he feigned madness and sowed his fields with salt. Palamedes outwitted him by placing Telemachus, then an infant, in front of the plough's path. Odysseus turned aside, unwilling to kill his son, so revealing his sanity and forcing him to join the war. According to Homer, however, Odysseus supported the military adventure from the beginning, and traveled the region with
Pylos Pylos (, ; el, Πύλος), historically also known as Navarino, is a town and a former municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division having Municipal corporation, corporate status and powers of self-government or ...

Pylos
' king,
Nestor Nestor may refer to: * Nestor (mythology), King of Pylos in Greek mythology Arts and entertainment * Nestor (Ulysses episode), "Nestor" (''Ulysses'' episode) an episode in James Joyce's novel ''Ulysses'' * Nestor Studios, first-ever motion pictur ...
, to recruit forces. At
Skyros Skyros ( el, Σκύρος, ), in some historical contexts Latinized Latinisation or Latinization can refer to: * Latinisation of names, the practice of rendering a non-Latin name in a Latin style * Latinisation in the Soviet Union, the campaign i ...

Skyros
,
Achilles In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of s originally told by the , and a of . These stories concern the and , the lives and activities of , , and , and the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own and practices. ...

Achilles
had an affair with the king's daughter Deidamia, resulting in a child,
Neoptolemus Neoptolemus (; Ancient Greek: Νεοπτόλεμος, ''Neoptolemos'', "new warrior"), also called Pyrrhus (; Πύρρος, ''Pyrrhos'', "red", for his red hair), was the son of the warrior Achilles and the princess Deidamia (mythology), Deidam ...
.Statius, ''Achilleid'' 1.25 Odysseus,
Telamonian Ajax Ajax () or Aias (; grc, Αἴας, Aíās , ''Aíantos''; Archaic Greek alphabets, archaic ) is a Greek mythology, Greek mythological Greek hero cult, hero, the son of King Telamon and Periboea, and the half-brother of Teucer. He plays an im ...
, and Achilles' tutor Phoenix went to retrieve Achilles. Achilles' mother disguised him as a woman so that he would not have to go to war, but, according to one story, they blew a horn, and Achilles revealed himself by seizing a spear to fight intruders, rather than fleeing. According to another story, they disguised themselves as merchants bearing trinkets and weaponry, and Achilles was marked out from the other women for admiring weaponry instead of clothes and jewelry.Scholiast on Homer's ''Iliad'' 19.326; Ovid, ''Metamorphoses'' 13.162 ff.
PausaniasPausanias (; Greek language, Greek: Παυσανίας) is the name of several people: *Pausanias of Athens, lover of the poet Agathon and a character in Plato's ''Symposium'' *Pausanias (general), Spartan general and regent of the 5th century BC *Pa ...
said that, according to Homer, Achilles did not hide in Skyros, but rather conquered the island, as part of the Trojan War.


First gathering at Aulis

The Achaean forces first gathered at Aulis. All the suitors sent their forces except King
Cinyras 280px, Myrrha and Cinyras. Engraving by Virgil Solis">Engraving.html" ;"title="Myrrha and Cinyras. Engraving">Myrrha and Cinyras. Engraving by Virgil Solis for Ovid's ''Metamorphoses'' In Greek mythology, Cinyras ( grc, Κινύρας – ''K ...
of Cyprus. Though he sent breastplates to Agamemnon and promised to send 50 ships, he sent only one real ship, led by the son of Mygdalion, and 49 ships made of clay.
Idomeneus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
was willing to lead the Cretan contingent in Mycenae's war against Troy, but only as a co-commander, which he was granted. The last commander to arrive was Achilles, who was then 15 years old. Following a sacrifice to
Apollo Apollo, grc, Ἀπόλλωνος, ''Apóllōnos'', label=genitive , ; , grc-dor, Ἀπέλλων, ''Apéllōn'', ; grc, Ἀπείλων, ''Apeílōn'', label=Arcadocypriot Greek, ; grc-aeo, Ἄπλουν, ''Áploun'', la, Apollō, ...

Apollo
, a snake slithered from the altar to a sparrow's nest in a plane tree nearby. It ate the mother and her nine chicks, then was turned to stone. Calchas interpreted this as a sign that Troy would fall in the tenth year of the war.


Telephus

When the Achaeans left for the war, they did not know the way, and accidentally landed in
Mysia Mysia (UK , US or ; el, Μυσία, lat, Mysia, tr, Misya) was a region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhab ...

Mysia
, ruled by King
Telephus In Greek mythology, Telephus (; grc-gre, Τήλεφος, ''Tēlephos'', "far-shining") was the son of Heracles and Auge, who was the daughter of king Aleus of Tegea. He was adopted by Teuthras, the king of Mysia, in Asia Minor, whom he succeeded ...
, son of Heracles, who had led a contingent of
Arcadia Arcadia may refer to: Places Australia * Arcadia, New South Wales, a suburb of Sydney * Arcadia, Queensland * Arcadia, Victoria Greece * Arcadia (region) Arcadia ( el, Ἀρκαδία) is a region in the central Peloponnese. It takes its name ...
ns to settle there. In the battle, Achilles wounded Telephus, who had killed
ThersanderIn Greek mythology, the name Thersander (; Ancient Greek: Θέρσανδρος "bold man" derived from θέρσος ''thersos'' "boldness, braveness" and ανδρος ''andros'' "of a man") refers to several distinct characters: *Thersander (Epigoni ...
. Because the wound would not heal, Telephus asked an oracle, "What will happen to the wound?". The oracle responded, "he that wounded shall heal". The Achaean fleet then set sail and was scattered by a storm. Achilles landed in Skyros and married Deidamia. A new gathering was set again in Aulis. Telephus went to Aulis, and either pretended to be a beggar, asking Agamemnon to help heal his wound,Apollodorus, ''Epitome'' 3.20. or kidnapped
Orestes In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
and held him for ransom, demanding the wound be healed. Achilles refused, claiming to have no medical knowledge. Odysseus reasoned that the spear that had inflicted the wound must be able to heal it. Pieces of the spear were scraped off onto the wound, and Telephus was healed. Telephus then showed the Achaeans the route to Troy. Some scholars have regarded the expedition against Telephus and its resolution as a derivative reworking of elements from the main story of the Trojan War, but it has also been seen as fitting the story-pattern of the "preliminary adventure" that anticipates events and themes from the main narrative, and therefore as likely to be "early and integral".


Second gathering

Eight years after the storm had scattered them, the fleet of more than a thousand ships was gathered again. But when they had all reached Aulis, the winds ceased. The prophet Calchas stated that the goddess
Artemis Artemis (; grc-gre, Ἄρτεμις Artemis, ) is the Greek goddess Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre consisting of narratives that play a fundamental role in a society, such as foundational tales or ori ...

Artemis
was punishing Agamemnon for killing either a sacred deer or a deer in a sacred grove, and boasting that he was a better hunter than she. The only way to appease Artemis, he said, was to sacrifice
Iphigenia In Greek mythology, Iphigenia (; grc, Ἰφιγένεια, , ) was a daughter of King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra, and thus a princess of Mycenae. In the story, Agamemnon offends the goddess Artemis on his way to the Trojan War by acciden ...

Iphigenia
, who was either the daughter of Agamemnon and
Clytemnestra Clytemnestra (; grc-gre, Κλυταιμνήστρα, ''Klytaimnḗstrā'', ), in Greek mythology, was the wife of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, and the sister of Helen of Troy. In Aeschylus' ''Oresteia'', she murders Agamemnon – said by Euripid ...
, or of Helen and
Theseus Theseus (, ; grc-gre, Θησεύς ) was the myth Myth is a folklore genre consisting of narratives that play a fundamental role in a society, such as foundational tales or origin myths. The main characters in myths are usually non-humans ...

Theseus
entrusted to Clytemnestra when Helen married Menelaus. Agamemnon refused, and the other commanders threatened to make Palamedes commander of the expedition. According to some versions, Agamemnon relented and performed the sacrifice, but others claim that he sacrificed a deer in her place, or that at the last moment, Artemis took pity on the girl, and took her to be a maiden in one of her temples, substituting a lamb.
Hesiod Hesiod (; grc-gre, Ἡσίοδος ''Hēsíodos'', 'he who emits the voice') was an ancient Greek poet generally thought to have been active between 750 and 650 BC, around the same time as Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēr ...
says that Iphigenia became the goddess
Hecate Hecate or Hekate, , ; grc-dor, Ἑκάτᾱ, Hekátā, ; la, Hecatē or . is a goddess in ancient Greek religion Ancient Greek religion encompasses the collection of beliefs, rituals, and Greek mythology, mythology originating in ancient ...

Hecate
. The Achaean forces are described in detail in the
Catalogue of Ships The Catalogue of Ships ( grc, νεῶν κατάλογος, ''neōn katálogos'') is an epic catalogue in Book 2 of Homer's ''Iliad'' (2.494–759), which lists the contingents of the Achaeans (Homer), Achaean army that sailed to Troy. The catalogu ...
, in the second book of the ''Iliad''. They consisted of 28 contingents from mainland Greece, the
Peloponnese The Peloponnese (), Peloponnesia, or Peloponnesus (; el, Πελοπόννησος, Pelopónnēsos, ) is a peninsula and geographic regions of Greece, geographic region in southern Greece. It is connected to the central part of the country by the ...
, the
Dodecanese The Dodecanese (, ; el, Δωδεκάνησα, ''Dodekánisa'' , literally "twelve islands") are a group of 15 larger plus 150 smaller Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ε ...

Dodecanese
islands,
Crete Crete ( el, Κρήτη, translit=, Modern Modern may refer to: History *Modern history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed by archaeology Archaeology or archeology ...

Crete
, and
Ithaca Ithaca, Ithaki or Ithaka (; Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population ...

Ithaca
, comprising
1186 Year 1186 ( MCLXXXVI) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar The Julian calendar, proposed by Julius Caesar in , was a reform of the Roman calendar. It took effect on , by edict. I ...

1186
pentekonters, ships with 50 rowers. Thucydides says that according to tradition there were about 1200 ships, and that the Boeotian ships had 120 men, while Philoctetes' ships only had the fifty rowers, these probably being maximum and minimum. These numbers would mean a total force of 70,000 to 130,000 men. Another catalogue of ships is given by the ''Bibliotheca (Pseudo-Apollodorus), Bibliotheca'' that differs somewhat but agrees in numbers. Some scholars have claimed that Homer's catalogue is an original Bronze Age document, possibly the Achaean commander's order of operations.Pantelis Karykas, Μυκηναίοι Πολεμιστές (Mycenian Warriors), Athens 1999.Vice Admiral P.E. Konstas R.H.N.,Η ναυτική ηγεμονία των Μυκηνών (The naval hegemony of Mycenae), Athens 1966 Others believe it was a fabrication of Homer. The second book of the ''Iliad'' also lists the Trojan Battle Order, Trojan allies, consisting of the Trojans themselves, led by
Hector 250px, The bronze coin struck in 350–300 BC in Ophryneion, which was considered to be the site of the Tomb of Hector. Obverse depicts bearded Hector wearing triple crested helmet and reverse depicts infant Dionysos. In Greek mythology and R ...

Hector
, and various allies listed as Dardanus (city), Dardanians led by
Aeneas In Greco-Roman mythology, Aeneas (, ; from Greek language, Greek: Αἰνείας, ''Aineíās'') was a Trojan hero, the son of the Trojan prince Anchises and the goddess Aphrodite (equivalent to the Roman Venus (mythology), Venus). His father ...
, Zeleians, Adrasteians, Percote, Percotians, Pelasgians, Thrace, Thracians, Ciconian spearmen, Paionian archers, Halizones,
Mysia Mysia (UK , US or ; el, Μυσία, lat, Mysia, tr, Misya) was a region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhab ...

Mysia
ns, Phrygians, Maeonians, Miletus, Miletians, Lycians led by Sarpedon (Trojan War hero), Sarpedon and Carians. Nothing is said of the Trojan language; the Carians are specifically said to be Carian language, barbarian-speaking, and the allied contingents are said to have spoken many languages, requiring orders to be translated by their individual commanders. The Trojans and Achaeans in the ''Iliad'' share the same religion, same culture and the enemy heroes speak to each other in the same language, though this could be dramatic effect.


Nine years of war


Philoctetes

Philoctetes was
Heracles Heracles ( ; grc-gre, Ἡρακλῆς, , glory/fame of Hera Hera (; grc-gre, Ἥρα, Hḗrā; grc, Ἥρη, Hḗrē, label=none in Ionic Ionic or Ionian may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Ionic meter, a poetic metre in anci ...

Heracles
' friend, and because he lit Heracles's funeral pyre when no one else would, he received Heracles' bow and arrows. He sailed with seven ships full of men to the Trojan War, where he was planning on fighting for the Achaeans. They stopped either at Chryse Island for supplies, or in Ancient Tenedos, Tenedos, along with the rest of the fleet. Philoctetes was then bitten by a snake. The wound festered and had a foul smell; on Odysseus's advice, the Atreidae ordered Philoctetes to stay on Lemnos. Medon took control of Philoctetes's men. While landing on Tenedos, Achilles killed king Tenes, son of Apollo, despite a warning by his mother that if he did so he would be killed himself by Apollo. From Tenedos, Agamemnon sent an embassy to the Priam king of Troy composed of Menelaus and Odysseus, asking for Helen's return. The embassy was refused. Philoctetes stayed on Lemnos for ten years, which was a deserted island according to Sophocles' tragedy ''Philoctetes'', but according to earlier tradition was populated by Minyans.


Arrival

Calchas had prophesied that the first Achaean to walk on land after stepping off a ship would be the first to die. Thus even the leading Greeks hesitated to land. Finally, Protesilaus, leader of the Phylace (Magnesia), Phylaceans, landed first. Odysseus had tricked him, in throwing his own shield down to land on, so that while he was first to leap off his ship, he was not the first to land on Trojan soil.
Hector 250px, The bronze coin struck in 350–300 BC in Ophryneion, which was considered to be the site of the Tomb of Hector. Obverse depicts bearded Hector wearing triple crested helmet and reverse depicts infant Dionysos. In Greek mythology and R ...

Hector
killed Protesilaus in single combat, though the Trojans conceded the beach. In the second wave of attacks, Achilles killed Cycnus, son of Poseidon. The Trojans then fled to the safety of the walls of their city. The walls served as sturdy fortifications for defense against the Greeks. The build of the walls was so impressive that legend held that they had been built by Poseidon and Apollo during a year of forced service to Trojan King Laomedon. Protesilaus had killed many Trojans but was killed by
Hector 250px, The bronze coin struck in 350–300 BC in Ophryneion, which was considered to be the site of the Tomb of Hector. Obverse depicts bearded Hector wearing triple crested helmet and reverse depicts infant Dionysos. In Greek mythology and R ...

Hector
in most versions of the story, though others list Aeneas, Achates, or Ephorbus as his slayer. The Achaeans buried him as a god on the Thracian peninsula, across the Troäd. After Protesilaus' death, his brother, Podarces, took command of his troops.


Achilles' campaigns

The Achaeans besieged Troy for nine years. This part of the war is the least developed among surviving sources, which prefer to talk about events in the last year of the war. After the initial landing the army was gathered in its entirety again only in the tenth year. Thucydides deduces that this was due to lack of money. They raided the Trojan allies and spent time farming the Thracian peninsula. Troy was never completely besieged, thus it maintained communications with the interior of Asia Minor. Reinforcements continued to come until the very end. The Achaeans controlled only the entrance to the Dardanelles, and Troy and her allies controlled the shortest point at Abydos, Hellespont, Abydos and Sestos and communicated with allies in Europe.Papademetriou Konstantinos, "Τα όπλα του Τρωϊκού Πολέμου" ("The weapons of the Trojan War"), Panzer Magazine issue 14, June–July 2004, Athens. Achilles and Ajax were the most active of the Achaeans, leading separate armies to raid lands of Trojan allies. According to Homer, Achilles conquered 11 cities and 12 islands. According to Apollodorus, he raided the land of Aeneas in the Troäd region and stole his cattle. He also captured Lyrnassus, Pedasus, and many of the neighbouring cities, and killed Troilus, son of Priam, who was still a youth; it was said that if he reached 20 years of age, Troy would not fall. According to Apollodorus,
He also took Lesbos Island, Lesbos and Phocaea, then Colophon (city), Colophon, and Smyrna, and Clazomenae, and Cyme (Aeolis), Cyme; and afterwards Aegialus and Tenos, the so-called Hundred Cities; then, in order, Edremit, Balıkesir, Adramytium and Side, Turkey, Side; then Endium, and Linaeum, and Colone. He took also Hypoplacian Thebes and Lyrnessus, and further Antandrus, and many other cities.
Kakrides comments that the list is wrong in that it extends too far into the south. Other sources talk of Achilles taking Pedasus, Monenia, Mythemna (in Lesbos), and Peisidice. Among the loot from these cities was Briseis, from Lyrnessus, who was awarded to him, and Chryseis, from Hypoplacian Thebes, who was awarded to Agamemnon. Achilles captured Lycaon (son of Priam), Lycaon, son of Priam, while he was cutting branches in his father's orchards. Patroclus sold him as a slave in Lemnos, where he was bought by Eetion of Imbros and brought back to Troy. Only 12 days later Achilles slew him, after the death of Patroclus.


Ajax and a game of ''petteia''

Ajax the Great, Ajax son of Telamon laid waste the Thracian peninsula of which Polymestor, a son-in-law of Priam, was king. Polymestor surrendered Polydorus (son of Priam), Polydorus, one of Priam's children, of whom he had custody. He then attacked the town of the Phrygian king Teleutas, killed him in single combat and carried off his daughter Tecmessa. Ajax also hunted the Trojan flocks, both on
Mount Ida In Greek mythology, two sacred mountains are called Mount Ida, the "Mountain of the Goddess": Mount Ida (Crete), Mount Ida in Crete, and Mount Ida (Turkey), Mount Ida in the ancient Troad region of western Anatolia (in modern-day Turkey), which wa ...

Mount Ida
and in the countryside. Numerous paintings on pottery have suggested a tale not mentioned in the literary traditions. At some point in the war Achilles and Ajax were playing a board game (''petteia''). They were absorbed in the game and oblivious to the surrounding battle. The Trojans attacked and reached the heroes, who were only saved by an intervention of Athena.


Death of Palamedes

Odysseus was sent to Thrace to return with grain, but came back empty-handed. When scorned by Palamedes (mythology), Palamedes, Odysseus challenged him to do better. Palamedes set out and returned with a shipload of grain. Odysseus had never forgiven Palamedes for threatening the life of his son. In revenge, Odysseus conceived a plot where an incriminating letter was forged, from Priam to Palamedes, and gold was planted in Palamedes' quarters. The letter and gold were "discovered", and Agamemnon had Palamedes stoned to death for treason. However, Pausanias, quoting the ''
Cypria The ''Cypria'' ( grc-gre, Κύπρια ''Kúpria''; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Lati ...
'', says that Odysseus and Diomedes drowned Palamedes, while he was fishing, and Dictys says that Odysseus and Diomedes lured Palamedes into a well, which they said contained gold, then stoned him to death. Palamedes' father Nauplius (mythology), Nauplius sailed to the Troäd and asked for justice, but was refused. In revenge, Nauplius traveled among the Achaean kingdoms and told the wives of the kings that they were bringing Trojan concubines to dethrone them. Many of the Greek wives were persuaded to betray their husbands, most significantly Agamemnon's wife,
Clytemnestra Clytemnestra (; grc-gre, Κλυταιμνήστρα, ''Klytaimnḗstrā'', ), in Greek mythology, was the wife of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, and the sister of Helen of Troy. In Aeschylus' ''Oresteia'', she murders Agamemnon – said by Euripid ...
, who was seduced by Aegisthus, son of Thyestes.


Mutiny

Near the end of the ninth year since the landing, the Achaean army, tired from the fighting and from the lack of supplies, mutinied against their leaders and demanded to return to their homes. According to the ''Cypria'', Achilles forced the army to stay. According to Apollodorus, Agamemnon brought the Wine Growers, daughters of Anius, son of
Apollo Apollo, grc, Ἀπόλλωνος, ''Apóllōnos'', label=genitive , ; , grc-dor, Ἀπέλλων, ''Apéllōn'', ; grc, Ἀπείλων, ''Apeílōn'', label=Arcadocypriot Greek, ; grc-aeo, Ἄπλουν, ''Áploun'', la, Apollō, ...

Apollo
, who had the gift of producing by touch wine, wheat, and oil from the earth, in order to relieve the supply problem of the army.


''Iliad''

Chryses, a priest of Apollo and father of Chryseis, came to
Agamemnon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
to ask for the return of his daughter. Agamemnon refused, and insulted Chryses, who prayed to
Apollo Apollo, grc, Ἀπόλλωνος, ''Apóllōnos'', label=genitive , ; , grc-dor, Ἀπέλλων, ''Apéllōn'', ; grc, Ἀπείλων, ''Apeílōn'', label=Arcadocypriot Greek, ; grc-aeo, Ἄπλουν, ''Áploun'', la, Apollō, ...

Apollo
to avenge his ill-treatment. Enraged, Apollo afflicted the Achaean army with plague.
Agamemnon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
was forced to return Chryseis to end the plague, and took
Achilles In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of s originally told by the , and a of . These stories concern the and , the lives and activities of , , and , and the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own and practices. ...

Achilles
' concubine Briseis as his own. Enraged at the dishonour Agamemnon had inflicted upon him, Achilles decided he would no longer fight. He asked his mother, Thetis, to intercede with Zeus, who agreed to give the Trojans success in the absence of Achilles, the best warrior of the Achaeans. After the withdrawal of Achilles, the Achaeans were initially successful. Both armies gathered in full for the first time since the landing. Menelaus and Paris fought a duel, which ended when Aphrodite snatched the beaten Paris from the field. With the truce broken, the armies began fighting again. Diomedes won great renown amongst the Achaeans, killing the Trojan hero Pandaros and nearly killing
Aeneas In Greco-Roman mythology, Aeneas (, ; from Greek language, Greek: Αἰνείας, ''Aineíās'') was a Trojan hero, the son of the Trojan prince Anchises and the goddess Aphrodite (equivalent to the Roman Venus (mythology), Venus). His father ...
, who was only saved by his mother, Aphrodite. With the assistance of Athena, Diomedes then wounded the gods
Aphrodite Aphrodite; , , ) is an ancient Greek goddess associated with love Love encompasses a range of strong and positive emotion Emotions are mental state, psychological states brought on by neurophysiology, neurophysiological changes, ...

Aphrodite
and Ares. During the next days, however, the Trojans drove the Achaeans back to their camp and were stopped at the Achaean wall by Poseidon. The next day, though, with Zeus' help, the Trojans broke into the Achaean camp and were on the verge of setting fire to the Achaean ships. An earlier appeal to Achilles to return was rejected, but after
Hector 250px, The bronze coin struck in 350–300 BC in Ophryneion, which was considered to be the site of the Tomb of Hector. Obverse depicts bearded Hector wearing triple crested helmet and reverse depicts infant Dionysos. In Greek mythology and R ...

Hector
burned Protesilaus' ship, he allowed his relative and best friend Patroclus to go into battle wearing Achilles' armour and lead his army. Patroclus drove the Trojans all the way back to the walls of Troy, and was only prevented from storming the city by the intervention of Apollo. Patroclus was then killed by Hector, who took Achilles' armour from the body of Patroclus. Achilles, maddened with grief over the death of Patroclus, swore to kill Hector in revenge. The exact nature of Achilles' relationship to Patroclus is the subject of some debate. Although certainly very close, Achilles and Patroclus are never explicitly cast as lovers by Homer, but they were depicted as such in the archaic and classical periods of Greek literature, particularly in the works of
Aeschylus Aeschylus (, ; grc-gre, Αἰσχύλος ''Aiskhylos'', ; c. 525/524 – c. 456/455 BC) was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kin ...
, Aeschines and Plato. He was reconciled with Agamemnon and received Briseis back, untouched by Agamemnon. He received a new set of arms, forged by the god
Hephaestus Hephaestus (; wikt:Hephaestus#Alternative forms, eight spellings; grc-gre, Ἥφαιστος, Hḗphaistos) is the Greek god of blacksmiths, metalworking, carpenters, craftsmen, artisans, sculpture, sculptors, metallurgy, Fire (classical el ...
, and returned to the battlefield. He slaughtered many Trojans, and nearly killed Aeneas, who was saved by Poseidon. Achilles fought with the river god Scamander, and a battle of the gods followed. The Trojan army returned to the city, except for Hector, who remained outside the walls because he was tricked by
Athena Athena or Athene, often given the epithet An epithet (, ) is a byname, or a descriptive term (word or phrase), accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied ...

Athena
. Achilles killed Hector, and afterwards he dragged Hector's body from his chariot and refused to return the body to the Trojans for burial. The body nevertheless remained unscathed as it was preserved from all injury by Apollo and Aphrodite. The Achaeans then conducted funeral games for Patroclus. Afterwards, Priam came to Achilles' tent, guided by
Hermes Hermes (; grc-gre, Ἑρμῆς) is an Olympian deity in ancient Greek religion and Greek mythology, mythology. Hermes is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, mercha ...

Hermes
, and asked Achilles to return Hector's body. The armies made a temporary truce to allow the burial of the dead. The ''Iliad'' ends with the funeral of Hector.


After the ''Iliad''


Penthesilea and the death of Achilles

Shortly after the burial of Hector, Penthesilea, queen of the Amazons, arrived with her warriors. Penthesilea, daughter of Otrera and Ares, had accidentally killed her sister Hippolyte. She was purified from this action by Priam, and in exchange she fought for him and killed many, including Machaon (physician), MachaonApollodorus, ''Epitome'' 5.1. (according to Pausanias, Machaon was killed by Eurypylus (son of Telephus), Eurypylus),Pausanias 3.26.9. and according to one version, Achilles himself, who was resurrected at the request of Thetis. In another version, Penthesilia was killed by AchillesProclus, ''Chrestomathy'' 2, ''Aethiopis''. who fell in love with her beauty after her death. Thersites, a simple soldier and the ugliest Achaean, taunted Achilles over his love and gouged out Penthesilea's eyes. Achilles slew Thersites, and after a dispute sailed to Lesbos, where he was purified for his murder by Odysseus after sacrificing to Apollo, Artemis, and Leto. While they were away, Memnon (mythology), Memnon of Ethiopia, son of Tithonus and Eos,Apollodorus, ''Epitome'' 5.3. came with his host to help his stepbrother Priam. He did not come directly from Ethiopia, but either from Susa in Persia, conquering all the peoples in between, or from the
Caucasus The Caucasus (), or Caucasia (), is a region spanning Europe and Asia. It is situated between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea and mainly occupied by Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia (country), Georgia, and parts of Southern Russia. It is home to ...
, leading an army of Ethiopians and Indians. Like Achilles, he wore armour made by Hephaestus. In the ensuing battle, Memnon killed Antilochus, who took one of Memnon's blows to save his father
Nestor Nestor may refer to: * Nestor (mythology), King of Pylos in Greek mythology Arts and entertainment * Nestor (Ulysses episode), "Nestor" (''Ulysses'' episode) an episode in James Joyce's novel ''Ulysses'' * Nestor Studios, first-ever motion pictur ...
. Achilles and Memnon then fought. Zeus weighed the fate of the two heroes; the weight containing that of Memnon sank, and he was slain by Achilles. Achilles chased the Trojans to their city, which he entered. The gods, seeing that he had killed too many of their children, decided that it was his time to die. He was killed after Paris shot a poisoned arrow that was guided by Apollo. In another version he was killed by a knife to the back (or heel) by Paris, while marrying Polyxena, daughter of Priam, in the temple of Thymbraean Apollo, the site where he had earlier killed Troilus. Both versions conspicuously deny the killer any sort of valour, saying Achilles remained undefeated on the battlefield. His bones were mingled with those of Patroclus, and funeral games were held. Like Ajax, he is represented as living after his death in the island of Leuke, at the mouth of the Danube River, where he is married to Helen.


Judgment of Arms

A great battle raged around the dead
Achilles In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of s originally told by the , and a of . These stories concern the and , the lives and activities of , , and , and the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own and practices. ...

Achilles
. Ajax held back the Trojans, while Odysseus carried the body away. When Achilles' armour was offered to the smartest warrior, the two that had saved his body came forward as competitors. Agamemnon, unwilling to undertake the invidious duty of deciding between the two competitors, referred the dispute to the decision of the Trojan prisoners, inquiring of them which of the two heroes had done most harm to the Trojans. Alternatively, the Trojans and Pallas Athena were the judgesProclus, ''Chrestomathy'' 3, ''Little Iliad''. in that, following Nestor's advice, spies were sent to the walls to overhear what was said. A girl said that Ajax was braver:
For Aias took up and carried out of the strife the hero, Peleus' son: this great Odysseus cared not to do. To this another replied by Athena's contrivance: Why, what is this you say? A thing against reason and untrue! Even a woman could carry a load once a man had put it on her shoulder; but she could not fight. For she would fail with fear if she should fight. (Scholiast on Aristophanes, Knights 1056 and Aristophanes ib)
According to Pindar, the decision was made by secret ballot among the Achaeans. In all story versions, the arms were awarded to Odysseus. Driven mad with grief, Ajax desired to kill his comrades, but Athena caused him to mistake for the Achaean warriors the cattle and their herdsmen. In his frenzy he scourged two rams, believing them to be Agamemnon and Menelaus. In the morning, he came to his senses and killed himself by jumping on the sword that had been given to him by Hector, so that it pierced his armpit, his only vulnerable part. According to an older tradition, he was killed by the Trojans who, seeing he was invulnerable, attacked him with clay until he was covered by it and could no longer move, thus dying of starvation.


Prophecies

After the tenth year, it was prophesied that Troy could not fall without Heracles' bow, which was with Philoctetes in Lemnos. Odysseus and Diomedes retrieved Philoctetes, whose wound had healed. Philoctetes then shot and killed Paris. According to Apollodorus, Paris' brothers Helenus and Deiphobus vied over the hand of Helen. Deiphobus prevailed, and Helenus abandoned Troy for Mount_Ida_(Turkey)#Mythology, Mount Ida. Calchas said that Helenus knew the prophecies concerning the fall of Troy, so Odysseus waylaid Helenus. Under coercion, Helenus told the Achaeans that they would win if they retrieved Pelops' bones, persuaded Achilles' son
Neoptolemus Neoptolemus (; Ancient Greek: Νεοπτόλεμος, ''Neoptolemos'', "new warrior"), also called Pyrrhus (; Πύρρος, ''Pyrrhos'', "red", for his red hair), was the son of the warrior Achilles and the princess Deidamia (mythology), Deidam ...
to fight for them, and stole the Trojan Palladium (mythology), Palladium. The Greeks retrieved Pelop's bones, and sent Odysseus to retrieve Neoptolemus, who was hiding from the war in King
Lycomedes In Greek mythology, Lycomedes ( grc, Λυκομήδης), also known as Lycurgus, was the most prominent king of the Dolopia, Dolopians in the island of Skyros, Scyros near Euboea during the Trojan War. Family Lycomedes was the father of a num ...
's court in Scyros. Odysseus gave him his father's arms. Eurypylus (son of Telephus), Eurypylus, son of
Telephus In Greek mythology, Telephus (; grc-gre, Τήλεφος, ''Tēlephos'', "far-shining") was the son of Heracles and Auge, who was the daughter of king Aleus of Tegea. He was adopted by Teuthras, the king of Mysia, in Asia Minor, whom he succeeded ...
, leading, according to Homer, a large force of ''Kêteioi'', or Hittites or
Mysia Mysia (UK , US or ; el, Μυσία, lat, Mysia, tr, Misya) was a region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhab ...

Mysia
ns according to Apollodorus, arrived to aid the Trojans. Eurypylus killed Machaon (mythology), Machaon and Peneleos, but was slain by Neoptolemus. Disguised as a beggar, Odysseus went to spy inside Troy, but was recognized by Helen. Homesick, Helen plotted with Odysseus. Later, with Helen's help, Odysseus and Diomedes stole the Palladium.


Trojan Horse

The end of the war came with one final plan. Odysseus devised a new ruse—a giant hollow wooden horse, an animal that was sacred to the Trojans. It was built by Epeius and guided by Athena,Homer, ''Odyssey'' 8.492–495; Apollodorus, ''Epitome'' 5.14. from the wood of a cornel tree grove sacred to Apollo, with the inscription: "The Greeks dedicate this thank-offering to Athena for their return home". The hollow horse was filled with soldiers led by Odysseus. The rest of the army burned the camp and sailed for Tenedos. When the Trojans discovered that the Greeks were gone, believing the war was over, they "joyfully dragged the horse inside the city", while they debated what to do with it. Some thought they ought to hurl it down from the rocks, others thought they should burn it, while others said they ought to dedicate it to Athena.Proclus, ''Chrestomathy'' 4, ''Iliou Persis''. Both Cassandra and Laocoön warned against keeping the horse. While Cassandra had been given the gift of prophecy by Apollo, she was also cursed by Apollo never to be believed. Serpents then came out of the sea and devoured either Laocoön and one of his two sons, Laocoön and both his sons, or only his sons, a portent which so alarmed the followers of Aeneas that they withdrew to Ida. The Trojans decided to keep the horse and turned to a night of mad revelry and celebration. Sinon, an Achaean spy, signaled the fleet stationed at Tenedos when "it was midnight and the clear moon was rising" and the soldiers from inside the horse emerged and killed the guards.


Sack of Troy

The Achaeans entered the city and killed the sleeping population. A great massacre followed which continued into the day.
Blood ran in torrents, drenched was all the earth, As Trojans and their alien helpers died. Here were men lying quelled by bitter death All up and down the city in their blood.
The Trojans, fuelled with desperation, fought back fiercely, despite being disorganized and leaderless. With the fighting at its height, some donned fallen enemies' attire and launched surprise counterattacks in the chaotic street fighting. Other defenders hurled down roof tiles and anything else heavy down on the rampaging attackers. The outlook was grim though, and eventually the remaining defenders were destroyed along with the whole city. Neoptolemus killed Priam, who had taken refuge at the altar of Zeus of the Courtyard.Apollodorus. ''Epitome'' 5.21. Menelaus killed Deiphobus, Helen's husband after Paris' death, and also intended to kill Helen, but, overcome by her beauty, threw down his sword and took her to the ships. Ajax the Lesser raped Cassandra on Athena's altar while she was clinging to her statue. Because of Ajax's impiety, the Acheaens, urged by Odysseus, wanted to stone him to death, but he fled to Athena's altar, and was spared. Antenor (mythology), Antenor, who had given hospitality to Menelaus and Odysseus when they asked for the return of Helen, and who had advocated so, was spared, along with his family. Aeneas took his father on his back and fled, and, according to Apollodorus, was allowed to go because of his piety. The Greeks then burned the city and divided the spoils. Cassandra was awarded to Agamemnon. Neoptolemus got Andromache, wife of Hector, and Odysseus was given Hecuba, Priam's wife. The Achaeans threw Hector's infant son Astyanax down from the walls of Troy, either out of cruelty and hate or to end the royal line, and the possibility of a son's revenge. They (by usual tradition Neoptolemus) also sacrificed the Trojan princess Polyxena on the grave of Achilles as demanded by his ghost, either as part of his spoil or because she had betrayed him. Aethra (Greek mythology), Aethra,
Theseus Theseus (, ; grc-gre, Θησεύς ) was the myth Myth is a folklore genre consisting of narratives that play a fundamental role in a society, such as foundational tales or origin myths. The main characters in myths are usually non-humans ...

Theseus
' mother, and one of Helen's handmaids, was rescued by her grandsons, Demophon of Athens, Demophon and Acamas.


Returns

The gods were very angry over the destruction of their temples and other sacrilegious acts by the Achaeans, and decided that most would not return home. A storm fell on the returning fleet off Tenos island. Additionally, Nauplius, in revenge for the murder of his son Palamedes, set up false lights in Cape Caphereus (also known today as Cavo D'Oro, in Euboea) and many were shipwrecked. *
Agamemnon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
had made it back to Argos safely with Cassandra in his possession after some stormy weather. He and Cassandra were slain by Aegisthus (in the oldest versions of the story) or by Clytemnestra or by both of them. Electra and
Orestes In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
later avenged their father, but Orestes was the one who was chased by the Erinyes, Furies. *
Nestor Nestor may refer to: * Nestor (mythology), King of Pylos in Greek mythology Arts and entertainment * Nestor (Ulysses episode), "Nestor" (''Ulysses'' episode) an episode in James Joyce's novel ''Ulysses'' * Nestor Studios, first-ever motion pictur ...
, who had the best conduct in Troy and did not take part in the looting, was the only hero who had a fast and safe return.Apollodorus, ''Epitome'' 5.24. Those of his army that survived the war also reached home with him safely, but later left and colonised Metapontium in Mezzogiorno, Southern Italy. * Ajax the Lesser, who had endured more than the others the wrath of the Gods, never returned. His ship was wrecked by a storm sent by Athena, who borrowed one of Zeus' thunderbolts and tore the ship to pieces. The crew managed to land in a rock, but Poseidon struck it, and Ajax fell in the sea and drowned. He was buried by Thetis in Myconos or Delos. * Teucer, son of Telamon and half-brother of Ajax, stood trial by his father for his half-brother's death. He was disowned by his father and wasn't allowed back on Salamis Island. He was at sea near Phreattys in Peiraeus. He was acquitted of responsibility but found guilty of negligence because he did not return his dead body or his arms. He left with his army (who took their wives) and founded Salamis in Cyprus. The Athenians later created a political myth that his son left his kingdom to Theseus' sons (and not to Megara). *
Neoptolemus Neoptolemus (; Ancient Greek: Νεοπτόλεμος, ''Neoptolemos'', "new warrior"), also called Pyrrhus (; Πύρρος, ''Pyrrhos'', "red", for his red hair), was the son of the warrior Achilles and the princess Deidamia (mythology), Deidam ...
, following the advice of Helenus, who accompanied him when he traveled over land, was always accompanied by Andromache. He met Odysseus and they buried Achilles' teacher Phoenix on the land of the Ciconians. They then conquered the land of the Molossians (Epirus) and Neoptolemus had a child by Andromache, Molossus (son of Neoptolemus), Molossus, to whom he later gave the throne. Thus the kings of Epirus claimed their lineage from Achilles, and so did Alexander the Great, whose mother was of that royal house. Alexander the Great and the kings of Macedon also claimed to be descended from Heracles. Helenus founded a city in Molossia and inhabited it, and Neoptolemus gave him his mother Deidamia as wife. After Peleus died he succeeded Phtia's throne. He had a feud with Orestes (mythology), Orestes (son of Agamemnon) over Menelaus' daughter Hermione (mythology), Hermione, and was killed in Delphi, where he was buried. In Roman myths, the kingdom of Phtia was taken over by Helenus, who married Andromache. They offered hospitality to other Trojan refugees, including Aeneas, who paid a visit there during his wanderings. * Diomedes was first thrown by a storm on the coast of Lycia, where he was to be sacrificed to Ares by king Lycus (mythology), Lycus, but Callirhoe (Lycia), Callirrhoe, the king's daughter, took pity upon him, and assisted him in escaping. He then accidentally landed in Attica, in Phaleron. The Athenians, unaware that they were allies, attacked them. Many were killed, and Demophon of Athens, Demophon took the Palladium. He finally landed in Argos, Peloponnese, Argos, where he found his wife Aegialeia committing adultery. In disgust, he left for Aetolia. According to later traditions, he had some adventures and founded Canusium and Argyrippa in Southern Italy. * Philoctetes, due to a sedition, was driven from his city and emigrated to Italy, where he founded the cities of Petilia, Old Crimissa, and Chone, between Crotone, Croton and Thurii. After making war on the Leucanians he founded there a sanctuary of Apollo the Wanderer, to whom also he dedicated his bow. * According to Homer,
Idomeneus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
reached his house safe and sound. Another tradition later formed. After the war,
Idomeneus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
's ship hit a horrible storm. Idomeneus promised Poseidon that he would sacrifice the first living thing he saw when he returned home if Poseidon would save his ship and crew. The first living thing he saw was his son, whom Idomeneus duly sacrificed. The gods were angry at his murder of his own son and they sent a plague to Crete. His people sent him into exile to Calabria in
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...

Italy
, and then to Colophon (city), Colophon, in Asia Minor, where he died. Among the lesser Achaeans very few reached their homes.


House of Atreus

According to the ''
Odyssey The ''Odyssey'' (; grc, Ὀδύσσεια, Odýsseia, ) is one of two major ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí ...
'',
Menelaus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...

Menelaus
's fleet was blown by storms to
Crete Crete ( el, Κρήτη, translit=, Modern Modern may refer to: History *Modern history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed by archaeology Archaeology or archeology ...

Crete
and
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identi ...

Egypt
, where they were unable to sail away because the winds were calm. Only five of his ships survived. Menelaus had to catch Proteus, a shape-shifting sea god, to find out what sacrifices to which gods he would have to make to guarantee safe passage. According to some stories the Helen who was taken by Paris was a fake, and the real Helen was in Egypt, where she was reunited with Menelaus. Proteus also told Menelaus that he was destined for Elysium (Heaven) after his death. Menelaus returned to Sparta with Helen eight years after he had left Troy.
Agamemnon In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
returned home with Cassandra to Argos. His wife
Clytemnestra Clytemnestra (; grc-gre, Κλυταιμνήστρα, ''Klytaimnḗstrā'', ), in Greek mythology, was the wife of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, and the sister of Helen of Troy. In Aeschylus' ''Oresteia'', she murders Agamemnon – said by Euripid ...
(Helen's sister) was having an affair with Aegisthus, son of Thyestes, Agamemnon's cousin who had conquered Argos before Agamemnon himself retook it. Possibly out of vengeance for the death of
Iphigenia In Greek mythology, Iphigenia (; grc, Ἰφιγένεια, , ) was a daughter of King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra, and thus a princess of Mycenae. In the story, Agamemnon offends the goddess Artemis on his way to the Trojan War by acciden ...

Iphigenia
, Clytemnestra plotted with her lover to kill Agamemnon. Cassandra foresaw this murder, and warned Agamemnon, but he disregarded her. He was killed, either at a feast or in his bath, according to different versions. Cassandra was also killed. Agamemnon's son Orestes, who had been away, returned and conspired with his sister Electra to avenge their father. He killed
Clytemnestra Clytemnestra (; grc-gre, Κλυταιμνήστρα, ''Klytaimnḗstrā'', ), in Greek mythology, was the wife of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, and the sister of Helen of Troy. In Aeschylus' ''Oresteia'', she murders Agamemnon – said by Euripid ...
and Aegisthus and succeeded to his father's throne.


''Odyssey''

Odysseus Odysseus ( ; grc-gre, Ὀδυσσεύς, Ὀδυσεύς, OdysseúsOdyseús, ), also known by the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken ...

Odysseus
' ten-year journey home to
Ithaca Ithaca, Ithaki or Ithaka (; Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population ...

Ithaca
was told in
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
's ''Odyssey''. Odysseus and his men were blown far off course to lands unknown to the Achaeans; there Odysseus had many adventures, including the famous encounter with the Cyclopes, Cyclops Polyphemus, and an audience with the seer Teiresias in Hades. On the island of Thrinacia, Odysseus' men ate the cattle sacred to the sun-god Helios. For this sacrilege Odysseus' ships were destroyed, and all his men perished. Odysseus had not eaten the cattle, and was allowed to live; he washed ashore on the island of Ogygia, and lived there with the nymph Calypso (mythology), Calypso. After seven years, the gods decided to send Odysseus home; on a small raft, he sailed to Scheria, the home of the Phaeacians, who gave him passage to
Ithaca Ithaca, Ithaki or Ithaka (; Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population ...

Ithaca
. Once in his home land, Odysseus traveled disguised as an old beggar. He was recognised by his dog, Argos (dog), Argos, who died in his lap. He then discovered that his wife,
Penelope Penelope ( ; el, Πηνελόπεια, ''Pēnelópeia'', or el, Πηνελόπη, ''Pēnelópē'') is a character in Homer's ''Odyssey.'' She was the queen of Ithaca and was the daughter of Spartan king Icarius (Spartan), Icarius and naiad Perib ...

Penelope
, had been faithful to him during the 20 years he was absent, despite the countless Suitors of Penelope, suitors that were eating his food and spending his property. With the help of his son
Telemachus Telemachus ( ; Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the following periods: M ...
, Athena, and Eumaeus, the swineherd, he killed all of them except Medon, who had been polite to Penelope, and Phemius, a local singer who had only been forced to help the suitors against Penelope. Penelope tested Odysseus with his unstrung recurve bow to ensure it was him, and he forgave her. The next day the suitors' relatives tried to take revenge on him but they were stopped by Athena.


''Telegony''

The ''
Telegony The ''Telegony'' (Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 mil ...
'' picks up where the ''Odyssey'' leaves off, beginning with the burial of the dead suitors, and continues until the death of Odysseus. Some years after Odysseus' return, Telegonus (son of Odysseus), Telegonus, the son of Odysseus and Circe, came to Ithaca and plundered the island. Odysseus, attempting to fight off the attack, was killed by his unrecognized son. After Telegonus realized he had killed his father, he brought the body to his mother Circe, along with Telemachus and Penelope. Circe made them immortal; then Telegonus married Penelope and Telemachus married Circe.


''Aeneid''

The journey of the Trojan survivor Aeneas and his resettling of Trojan refugees in Italy are the subject of the Latin epic poem the ''
Aeneid The ''Aeneid'' ( ; la, Aenē̆is ) is a Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the p ...
'' by
Virgil Publius Vergilius Maro (; traditional dates 15 October 7021 September 19 BC), usually called Virgil or Vergil ( ) in English, was an ancient Rome, ancient Roman poet of the Augustan literature (ancient Rome), Augustan period. He composed three ...

Virgil
. Writing during the time of Augustus, Virgil has his hero give a first-person account of the fall of Troy in the second of the ''Aeneid''s twelve books; the Trojan Horse, which does not appear in the ''Iliad'', became legendary from Virgil's account. Aeneas leads a group of survivors away from the city, among them his son Ascanius (also known as Iulus), his trumpeter Misenus, father Anchises, the healer Iapyx, his faithful sidekick Achates, and Mimas (Aeneid), Mimas as a guide. His wife Creusa (wife of Aeneas), Creusa is killed during the sack of the city. Aeneas also carries the Lares and Penates of Troy, which the historical Romans claimed to preserve as guarantees of Rome's own security. The Trojan survivors escape with a number of ships, seeking to establish a new homeland elsewhere. They land in several nearby countries that prove inhospitable, and are finally told by an oracle that they must return to the land of their forebears. They first try to establish themselves in
Crete Crete ( el, Κρήτη, translit=, Modern Modern may refer to: History *Modern history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed by archaeology Archaeology or archeology ...

Crete
, where Dardanus (son of Zeus), Dardanus had once settled, but find it ravaged by the same plague that had driven
Idomeneus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature of ...
away. They find the colony led by Helenus and Andromache, but decline to remain. After seven years they arrive in Carthage, where Aeneas has an affair with Dido (Queen of Carthage), Queen Dido. (Since according to tradition Carthage was founded in 814 BC, the arrival of Trojan refugees a few hundred years earlier exposes chronological difficulties within the mythic tradition.) Eventually the gods order Aeneas to continue onward, and he and his people arrive at the mouth of the Tiber, Tiber River in Italy. Dido commits suicide, and Aeneas's betrayal of her was regarded as an element in the long enmity between Rome and Carthage that expressed itself in the Punic Wars and led to Roman hegemony. At Cumae (Italy), Cumae, the Sibyl leads Aeneas on an archetypal descent to the underworld, where the shade of his dead father serves as a guide; this book of the ''Aeneid'' directly influenced Dante, who has Virgil act as his narrator's guide. Aeneas is given a vision of the future majesty of ancient Rome, Rome, which it was his duty to found, and returns to the world of the living. He negotiates a settlement with the local king, Latinus, and was wed to his daughter, Lavinia. This triggered a war with other local tribes, which culminated in the founding of the settlement of Alba Longa, ruled by Aeneas and Lavinia's son Silvius (mythology), Silvius. Roman mythology, Roman myth attempted to reconcile two different founding myths: three hundred years later, in the more famous tradition, Romulus founded Rome after murdering his brother Remus. The Trojan origins of Rome became particularly important in the propaganda of Julius Caesar, whose family claimed descent from Venus (mythology), Venus through Aeneas's son Iulus (hence the Latin ''gens'' name ''Iulius''), and during the Principate, reign of Augustus; see for instance the ''Tabulae Iliacae'' and the "Lusus Troiae, Troy Game" presented frequently by the Julio-Claudian dynasty.


Dates of the Trojan War

Since this war was considered among the ancient Greeks as either the last event of the mythical age or the first event of the historical age, several dates are given for the fall of Troy. They usually derive from genealogies of kings. Ephorus gives 1135 BC, Sosibius 1172 BC,
Eratosthenes Eratosthenes of Cyrene (; grc-gre, Ἐρατοσθένης ;  – ) was a Greek polymath A polymath ( el, πολυμαθής, , "having learned much"; la, homo universalis, "universal human") is an individual whose knowledge spans a ...

Eratosthenes
1184 BC/1183 BC, Timaeus (historian), Timaeus 1193 BC, the Parian Chronicle, Parian marble 1209 BC/1208 BC, Dicaearchus 1212 BC,
Herodotus Herodotus ( ; grc, Ἡρόδοτος, Hēródotos, ; BC) was an Classical Greece, ancient Greek writer, geographer, and historian born in the Greek city of Halicarnassus, part of the Achaemenid Empire, Persian Empire (now Bodrum, Turkey). He ...
around 1250 BC, Eretes 1291 BC, while Douris (tyrant), Douris gives 1334 BC. As for the exact day Ephorus gives 23/24 Thargelion (May 6 or 7), Hellanicus of Lesbos, Hellanicus 12 Thargelion (May 26) while others give the 23rd of Sciroforion (July 7) or the 23rd of Ponamos (October 7). The glorious and rich city Homer describes was believed to be Troy#Troy VI and VII, Troy VI by many twentieth century authors, and destroyed about 1275 BC, probably by an earthquake. Its successor,
Troy VII Troy VII is an archaeological layer at Hisarlik which corresponds to the city of Troy from roughly 1300 to 950 BC. It was a walled city comprising a citadel surrounded by a large lower town, described by Manfred Korfmann as "by the standards of its ...
a, was destroyed around 1180 BC; it was long considered a poorer city, and dismissed as a candidate for Homeric Troy, but since the excavation campaign of 1988, it has come to be regarded as the most likely candidate.


Historical basis

The historicity of the Trojan War, including whether it occurred at all and where Troy was located if it ever existed, is still subject to debate. Most classical Greeks thought that the war was a historical event, but many believed that the Homeric poems had exaggerated the events to suit the demands of poetry. For instance, the historian Thucydides, who is known for being critical, considers it a true event but doubts that 1,186 ships were sent to Troy.
Euripides Euripides (; grc, Εὐριπίδης ''Eurīpídēs'', ; ) was a tragedian Tragedy (from the grc-gre, τραγῳδία, ''tragōidia'', ''tragōidia'') is a form of drama based on human suffering and, mainly, the terrible or sorrowfu ...

Euripides
started changing Greek myths at will, including those of the Trojan War. Near year 100 AD, Dio Chrysostom argued that while the war was historical, it ended with the Trojans winning, and the Greeks attempted to hide that fact. Around 1870 it was generally agreed in Western Europe that the Trojan War had never happened and Troy never existed. Then
Heinrich Schliemann Heinrich Schliemann (; 6 January 1822 – 26 December 1890) was a German German(s) may refer to: Common uses * of or related to Germany * Germans, Germanic ethnic group, citizens of Germany or people of German ancestry * For citizens of Germa ...

Heinrich Schliemann
popularized his excavations at Hisarlik, Canakkale, which he and others believed to be Troy, and of the
Mycenae Mycenae ( ; grc, Μυκῆναι or , ''Mykē̂nai'' or ''Mykḗnē'') is an archaeological site near Mykines, Greece, Mykines in Argolis, north-eastern Peloponnese, Greece. It is located about south-west of Athens; north of Argos, Peloponne ...

Mycenae
an cities of Greece. Today many scholars agree that the Trojan War is based on a historical core of a Greek expedition against the city of
Troy Troy (Greek language, Greek: Τροία) or Ilium (Greek language, Greek: Ίλιον) was an ancient city located at Hisarlik in present-day Turkey, south-west of Çanakkale. It is known as the setting for the Greek mythology, Greek myth of the ...

Troy
, but few would argue that the Homeric poems faithfully represent the actual events of the war. In November 2001, geologist John C. Kraft and classicist John V. Luce presented the results of investigations into the geology of the region that had started in 1977. ''Iliad''
Discovery.
The geologists compared the present geology with the landscapes and coastal features described in the ''Iliad'' and other classical sources, notably Strabo's ''Geographica''. Their conclusion was that there is regularly a consistency between the location of Troy as identified by Schliemann (and other locations such as the Greek camp), the geological evidence, and descriptions of the topography and accounts of the battle in the ''Iliad'', although of course this could be a coincidence. In the twentieth century scholars have attempted to draw conclusions based on Hittites, Hittite and Ancient Egypt, Egyptian texts that date to the time of the Trojan War. While they give a general description of the political situation in the region at the time, their information on whether this particular conflict took place is limited. Andrew Dalby notes that while the Trojan War most likely did take place in some form and is therefore grounded in history, its true nature is unknown. The Tawagalawa letter mentions a kingdom of ''Ahhiyawa'' (Achaea, or Greece) that lies beyond the sea (that would be the Aegean) and controls Milliwanda, which is identified with Miletus. Also mentioned in this and other letters is the Assuwa confederation made of 22 cities and countries which included the city of ''Wilusa'' (Ilios or Ilium). The Milawata letter implies this city lies on the north of the Assuwa confederation, beyond the Seha river. While the identification of Wilusa with Ilium (that is, Troy) is always controversial, in the 1990s it gained majority acceptance. In the Alaksandu treaty (c. 1280 BC) the king of the city is named Alaksandu, and Paris (mythology), Paris's name in the ''Iliad'' (among other works) is Alexander. The Tawagalawa letter (dated c. 1250 BC) which is addressed to the king of Ahhiyawa actually says: "Now as we have come to an agreement on Wilusa over which we went to war ..." Formerly under the Hittites, the Assuwa confederation defected after the battle of Kadesh between Egypt and the Hittites (c. 1274 BC). In 1230 BC Hittite king Tudhaliya IV (c. 1240–1210 BC) campaigned against this federation. Under Arnuwanda III (c. 1210–1205 BC) the History of the Hittites, Hittites were forced to abandon the lands they controlled in the coast of the Aegean. It is possible that the Trojan War was a conflict between the king of Ahhiyawa and the Assuwa confederation. This view has been supported in that the entire war includes the landing in Mysia (and Telephus' wounding), Achilles's campaigns in the North Aegean and Ajax the Great, Telamonian Ajax's campaigns in Thrace and Phrygia. Most of these regions were part of Assuwa. That most Achaean heroes did not return to their homes and founded colonies elsewhere was interpreted by Thucydides as being due to their long absence. Nowadays the interpretation followed by most scholars is that the Achaean leaders driven out of their lands by the turmoil at the end of the Mycenaean era preferred to claim descent from exiles of the Trojan War.Graves, Robert. ''The Greek Myths'', "The Returns".


In popular culture

The inspiration provided by these events produced many literary works, far more than can be listed here. The siege of Troy provided inspiration for many works of art, most famously
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
's ''
Iliad The ''Iliad'' (; grc, Ἰλιάς, Iliás, ; sometimes referred to as the ''Song of Ilion'' or ''Song of Ilium'') is an in , traditionally attributed to . Usually considered to have been written down circa the 8th century BC, the ''Iliad'' i ...

Iliad
'', set in the last year of the siege. Some of the others include ''The Trojan Women, Troädes'' by
Euripides Euripides (; grc, Εὐριπίδης ''Eurīpídēs'', ; ) was a tragedian Tragedy (from the grc-gre, τραγῳδία, ''tragōidia'', ''tragōidia'') is a form of drama based on human suffering and, mainly, the terrible or sorrowfu ...

Euripides
, ''Troilus and Criseyde'' by Geoffrey Chaucer, ''Troilus and Cressida'' by William Shakespeare, ''
Iphigenia In Greek mythology, Iphigenia (; grc, Ἰφιγένεια, , ) was a daughter of King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra, and thus a princess of Mycenae. In the story, Agamemnon offends the goddess Artemis on his way to the Trojan War by acciden ...

Iphigenia
'' and ''Polyxena'' by Samuel Coster, ''Palamedes'' by Joost van den Vondel and ''Les Troyens'' by Hector Berlioz. Films based on the Trojan War include ''Helen of Troy (film), Helen of Troy'' (1956), ''The Trojan Horse (film), The Trojan Horse'' (1961) and ''Troy (film), Troy'' (2004). The war has also been featured in many books, television series, and other creative works.


References


Further reading


Ancient authors

* Bibliotheca (Pseudo-Apollodorus), Apollodorus, ''Gods & Heroes of the Greeks: The Library of Apollodorus'', translated by Michael Simpson, The University of Massachusetts Press, (1976). . * Apollodorus,
Apollodorus: The Library
', translated by Sir James George Frazer, two volumes, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press and London: William Heinemann Ltd. 1921. Volume 1: . Volume 2: . *
Euripides Euripides (; grc, Εὐριπίδης ''Eurīpídēs'', ; ) was a tragedian Tragedy (from the grc-gre, τραγῳδία, ''tragōidia'', ''tragōidia'') is a form of drama based on human suffering and, mainly, the terrible or sorrowfu ...

Euripides

''Andromache''
in ''Euripides: Children of Heracles, Hippolytus, Andromache, Hecuba'', with an English translation by David Kovacs. Cambridge. Harvard University Press. (1996). . * Euripides
''Helen''
in ''The Complete Greek Drama'', edited by Whitney J. Oates and Eugene O'Neill, Jr. in two volumes. 1. ''Helen'', translated by E. P. Coleridge. New York. Random House. 1938. * Euripides
''Hecuba''
in ''The Complete Greek Drama'', edited by Whitney J. Oates and Eugene O'Neill, Jr. in two volumes. 1. ''Hecuba'', translated by E. P. Coleridge. New York. Random House. 1938. *
Herodotus Herodotus ( ; grc, Ἡρόδοτος, Hēródotos, ; BC) was an Classical Greece, ancient Greek writer, geographer, and historian born in the Greek city of Halicarnassus, part of the Achaemenid Empire, Persian Empire (now Bodrum, Turkey). He ...

''Histories''
A. D. Godley (translator), Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1920; . Online version at the Perseus Digital Library]. *
PausaniasPausanias (; Greek language, Greek: Παυσανίας) is the name of several people: *Pausanias of Athens, lover of the poet Agathon and a character in Plato's ''Symposium'' *Pausanias (general), Spartan general and regent of the 5th century BC *Pa ...
,
Description of Greece
', (Loeb Classical Library) translated by W. H. S. Jones; Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press; London, William Heinemann Ltd. (1918). Vol 1, Books I–II, ; Vol 2, Books III–V, ; Vol 3, Books VI–VIII.21, ; Vol 4, Books VIII.22–X, . * Proclus, ''Chrestomathy'', i
Fragments of the ''Kypria''
translated by H.G. Evelyn-White, 1914 (public domain). * Proclus,
Proclus' Summary of the Epic Cycle
', trans. Gregory Nagy. * Quintus Smyrnaeus, ''Posthomerica'', i
''Quintus Smyrnaeus: The Fall of Troy''
Arthur Sanders Way (Ed. & Trans.), Loeb Classics #19; Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. (1913). (1962 edition: ). * Strabo
''Geography''
translated by Horace Leonard Jones; Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press; London: William Heinemann, Ltd. (1924)


Modern authors

* Burgess, Jonathan S. 2004. ''The Tradition of the Trojan War in Homer and the Epic Cycle'' (Johns Hopkins). . * Castleden, Rodney. ''The Attack on Troy''. Barnsley, South Yorkshire, UK: Pen and Sword Books, 2006 (hardcover, ). * * Durschmied, Erik. ''The Hinge Factor:How Chance and Stupidity Have Changed History''. Coronet Books; New Ed edition (7 Oct 1999). * Frazer, Sir James George,
Apollodorus: The Library
', two volumes, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press and London: William Heinemann Ltd. 1921. Volume 1: . Volume 2: . * Graves, Robert. ''The Greek Myths'', Penguin (Non-Classics); Cmb/Rep edition (April 6, 1993). . * Kakridis, J., 1988. Ελληνική Μυθολογία ("Greek mythology"), Ekdotiki Athinon, Athens. * Karykas, Pantelis, 2003. Μυκηναίοι Πολεμιστές ("Mycenean Warriors"), Communications Editions, Athens. * Latacz, Joachim. ''Troy and Homer: Towards a Solution of an Old Mystery''. New York: Oxford University Press (US), 2005 (hardcover, ). * Simpson, Michael. ''Gods & Heroes of the Greeks: Bibliotheke, The Library of Apollodorus'', The University of Massachusetts Press, (1976). . * Strauss, Barry. ''The Trojan War: A New History''. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2006 (hardcover, ). * * ''Troy: From Homer's Iliad to Hollywood Epic'', edited by Martin M. Winkler. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 2007 (hardcover, ; paperback, ). * Wood, Michael. ''In Search of the Trojan War''. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998 (paperback, ); London: BBC Books, 1985 ().


External links


Was There a Trojan War?
Maybe so. From Archeology, a publication of the Archeological Institute of America. May/June 2004

at Greek Mythology Link
The Legend of the Trojan War
Archived fro
the original
on 28th October 2007.

Archived fro

on 19 December 2014.

The location of Troy and possible connections with the city of Teuthrania. Archived fro

on 23rd November 2011.



Archived fro

on 19th April 2019.
BBC audio podcast
Melvyn Bragg interviews Edith Hall and others on historicity, history and archaeology of the war. []
Warburg Institute Iconographic Database (about 2500 images related to the Trojan War)

A New Astronomical Dating Of The Trojan War's End, Mediterranean Archaeology and Archaeometry
{{Authority control Trojan War, 12th century BC Troy War in mythology Military deception Late Bronze Age collapse