ORIGINS OF THE TROJAN WAR
The Trojan War, approximately 3 millennia ago, was fought between the Achaeans and the Trojans. The Achaeans (a name used by Homer in the Iliad as a collective name for the Greeks) consisted of soldiers and leaders from many different Greek city states and islands and worshipped the Olympian gods. The Trojans were an Anatolian people from Northern modern-day Turkey. The Trojans had many similarities with both Ancient Greek and Hittite culture but according to Homer they adopted the Olympian gods as their religion. There is debate over the historical accuracy of the Iliad the epic poem written by Homer who was a famous Ancient Greek poet. However it is now agreed amongst most historians that the Trojan War did take place but likely not exactly how Homer described it. Homer’s description of the events in the Trojan War and leading up to the Trojan War are unrealistic and often biased towards the Achaeans. According to Homer, the war started with Helen escaping to Troy with Paris, a Prince of Troy. Paris was a guest in Helen’s husband's home when he committed adultery with her, disrespecting the rules of hospitality which were seen as sacred. This cause of war was referred to many times in The Iliad authored by Homer: Achilles:
"But why must the Argives fight
the Trojans? Why did Atreus' son assemble
and bring us? Wasn't it for Helen's sake?
Are Atreus' sons the only men who love their wives?" Lines 336-340 Book Sixteen
“It is no cause for anger that the Trojans and the well-greaved Achaeans have suffered for so long over such a woman: she is wondrously like the immortal goddesses to look upon.” Of Helen, Book 3.
There was a wedding shortly before this, where Eris (the Goddess of Discord) threw a golden apple towards a group of goddesses that was engraved with the word "Kallisti": "for the fairest." Three goddesses in particular, Aphrodite, Athena and Hera felt that they were the fairest, and so the apple must have been...
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