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The Trojan War
The Trojan War
The Trojan War actually occurred: The city of
Troy fell into the hands of the Greeks.
Archaeologists have found historical evidence
of the war.
Was it exactly as told in The Iliad?
– No. It was probably fought over commerce and
trade between Greece and Asia Minor.
– But Homer’s version (The Iliad) is more exciting!
– Some of the characters may have been based on
real personalities.
What’s a Trojan?
A person from Troy
 One who shows qualities like those of
the soldiers who defended ancient Troy:
endurance, toughness, determined
Where’s Troy?
Troy is across the
Aegean Sea from
Troy was also called
Ilium, Ilion, and Ilios.
A well-walled city
with broad streets
and beautiful
palaces…until the
Trojan War.
The beginning of the 12th century B.C.
 1193 – 1184 B.C.
 That’s 3,200 years ago!
– B.C. = Before Christ
– A.D. = Anno Domini (The Year of Our Lord)
Greeks (Achaeans)
– Achilles
Greatest Greek
King Agamemnon
Helen’s Husband
– Hector
Greatest Trojan
– King Priam
Father of Hector
– Aeneas
– Paris
Helen’s Abductor
With whom did the gods side?
Zeus tries to remain neutral, but he shows empathy
for Priam and Hector (Trojans).
How did it start?
Eris, goddess of discord, was not invited to a
wedding banquet on Mt. Olympus.
Into the banquet hall, Eris tossed a golden
apple inscribed “For the Fairest.”
Athena, Hera, and Aphrodite asked Zeus to
decide who deserved the apple.
Zeus would not choose. (He’s no fool!)
Zeus says Paris is an excellent judge of
beauty, and refers the goddesses to him.
The Judgment of Paris
Paris was the son of King Priam of Troy.
He was rather weak and cowardly.
Priam had sent him away from Troy because
an oracle prophesied that he would be the
ruin of the city.
When the goddesses appeared to him, they
each offered him a bribe:
– Athena would make him a great warrior.
– Hera would make him ruler of Europe and Asia.
– Aphrodite would give him the most beautiful
woman in the world.
Whom did he choose?
Paris gave the
apple to Aphrodite.
She then took Paris
to Helen, the most
beautiful woman in
the world.
Hera and Athena,
however, vowed
Helen was a daughter of Zeus.
 She was the wife of Menelaus.
 Menelaus was the brother of the Greek
King, Agamemnon.
 See the problem?
Paris takes Helen
The Greeks Respond
Menelaus asks all of Greece to help.
 Greek armies set off across the sea to
lay siege to Troy and leave it in ashes.
 And so begins the Trojan War.
 Helen is often referred to as “The Face
that Launched a Thousand Ships.”
Odysseus and Achilles Join Late
Odysseus didn’t want to fight for Helen.
– He thought her a faithless woman.
– He did not want to leave his home (Ithaca).
Achilles was kept back by his mother.
– Thetis was a sea nymph who knew he was fated
to die in Troy.
– She had dipped him in the river Styx to try and
give him immortality. (She held him by the heel.)
Both of these great Greek warriors were later
called (forced) into battle where they played
important roles in many battles.
The Battle Rages
Due to the influence of various gods
and goddesses, the war went back and
forth for many years.
 For details of the war, read the epic
poem by Homer called The Iliad, a word
which means “a series of disastrous
Leader of all Greek forces during Trojan
 Sacrificed his daughter (Iphegenia) to
Artemis in order to get favorable winds
for the ships to sail to Troy
 Offended Achilles by taking his “prize”
(a girl named Briseis) after one battle
Achilles Pouts
Because Agamemnon offended him,
Achilles refused to fight.
 Then things went badly for the Greeks,
and they begged him to return.
 He allowed his friend Patroclus to fight
in his place, wearing his armor.
 Patroclus is killed by Hector (who
thought it was Achilles).
Achilles Returns
Enraged over the death of Patroclus,
Achilles returns to battle.
 His mother procures for him some new
armor (made by Hephaestus).
 He kills Hector and desecrates the body.
Achilles Relents
King Priam sneaks into the Greek camp
and begs Achilles to give him Hector’s
body so that his son may have proper
funeral rites.
 Achilles allows Priam to take the body.
 After Hector’s death, Achilles does not
have long to live.
The Death of Achilles
Achilles was unconquerable by mortal
men, but Apollo stepped in.
 Apollo guided Paris’s arrow into the only
weak spot Achilles had: his heel.
 Achilles dies from the wound.
 The remaining Greeks decide his divine
armor should go to the bravest
remaining warrior.
Odysseus Wins
Odysseus makes a speech explaining
why he deserves it, and he is awarded
the armor of Achilles.
 He then devises the final plan to end
the Trojan War.
The Trojan Horse
The Greeks
pretend to
retreat, leaving
behind a large
wooden horse.
The Trojans, in
celebration, drag
the horse inside
their city as a
war prize.
The Trojan Horse
Odysseus and many other Greek warriors are
hiding inside the horse.
The Fall of Troy
They wait until the Trojans are asleep,
and then they come out and slaughter
 The Trojan War is ended.
 The Greeks won.
 The Trojans lost.
 Odysseus is the greatest hero remaining
alive…but now he has to get home…
The Odyssey Begins…
The story of The Odyssey is about
Odysseus’ journey home (to Ithaca)
after the Trojan War.
 It’s quite a journey!
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only; it has not been and should not be sold
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