Helen of Troy

Starter of the Trojan War

A Life

Helen was the daughter of Zeus and Leda, the queen of Sparta. She had a sister, Clytemnestra and twin brothers, Castor and Pollux.
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As a child, Helen was kidnapped by Theseus and taken to Aphidnae, an Attican village. Her brothers, Castor and Pollux rescued her though. When Helen came back to Sparta, she attracted a lot of suitors, one of which was Odysseus. He made everyone swear an oath to defend the honor of whoever was Helen's husband. Soon after that, Menelaus was chosen. Helen and Menelaus had three four children, Hermione, Aethiolas, Maraphius, and Pleisthenes.
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Meanwhile, Paris, prince of Troy, was the judge for a beauty contest between Aphrodite, Athena, and Hera. He chose Aphrodite and in turn, was promised Helen, the most beautiful woman in the world. Menelaus had to come to Troy in order to oversee the propitiatory rites at the graves of Prometheus' sons. Paris met Menelaus and sailed back to Sparta with him. There, Paris and Helen fell in love. When Menelaus had to leave to attend his grandfather's funeral, they eloped.
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When Menelaus found out, he was angered and reminded Helen's past suitors of their oath. Together, they sailed to Troy to get Helen back. This resulted in the Trojan War which lasted ten years.
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The end of Helen's life is cloudy. Some say she sailed back to Sparta and spent the rest of her life there. Others say she was exiled by her stepsons.

Bibliography

Bell, Robert. "About Helen of Troy". Modern American Poetry. 1991. Web. 05 Nov. 2014.


Rita. "Helen". Stanford. Web. 05 Nov. 2014


Senior, Michael. The Illustrated Who's Who in Mythology. New York City. Macmillian. 1985. Print.


"Helen of Troy". Helen of Troy. World Book, Inc. 2014. Ebsco Host. Web. 07 Nov. 2014.