The Trojan war was very complicated, and to gods and mortals alike, they all fought bitterly. One story in the Trojan war was the Judgement of Paris. It is the story of the Golden Apple that Eris disguised but was the apple of discord.
It was the wedding of Peleus and Thetis, and all the gods except Eris was invited. This angered her, and she left a golden apple that said “To the Fairest” at Hermes’ door (Hermes was the messenger god). Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite all went to get it. However, the apple that Eris threw was not the Apple of the Fairest, but the Apple of Discord. The wedding ended abruptly and sourly.
At Olympus, the three goddesses still quarrelled bitterly, but none of the other gods would say who was the fairest, as not to anger the other two. Zeus one day, looking upon the world, spotted a very handsome young man, Paris, a prince of Troy. The great king of gods invited the three quarrelling goddesses to Mount Ida, where Paris was herding sheep.
Hera said, “Pick me, and you will be the ruler of Asia.”
Athena stated, “Pick me, and you will be the wisest man.”
Aphrodite replied, “Pick me, and the most beautiful woman will be your bride.”
Paris gave the apple to Aphrodite, because he was still young and didn’t care for power or wisdom. What Aphrodite didn’t know, however, was that Helen of Sparta, the most beautiful woman in the world, was married already.
Paris, not forgetting his promise, went to Sparta to fetch his bride. Right at the moment when Helen laid her eyes on him, Eros shot an arrow of love through her heart. She packed her belongings and left for Troy with Paris. The Trojans happily accepted her, but King Menelaus, Helen’s former husband would not give up that easily. He sent fleets carrying his army to take Helen back, but the Trojans didn’t want to let her leave. Troy was also hard to conquer, so after many discussions, it was decided that Paris and Menelaus would fight in single combat, and whoever won would have Helen as his wife.
Menelaus was a great fighter, but Paris would rather be in his silk bed than in sweaty armor. Aphrodite came to his rescue, by hiding Paris in a cloud so that Menelaus couldn’t see him. The battle was undecided.
The Trojans and Greeks fought for a long time-ten years. Even some of the gods took sides, but they were getting injured so Zeus ordered all the gods to leave the mortals to decide themselves. Lots of heroes died, but each side had no big gain. The Greek’s secret weapon was Achilles, son of Peleus and Thetis. He was invunerable, except for his heel. Paris was not a great archer, but when he drew his bow, Apollo snuck up to him and led his arrow to go straight to Achilles’ heel. Achilles fell, and the Greeks mourned. Their revenge was on Paris, and he was killed by a poisoned arrow. The Trojans drove the Greeks out. Or so they thought so.
The Greeks left Troy, but left a large wooden horse. The Trojans took it in as a trophy, not knowing that the horse was hollow, but filled to the brim with Greek warriors. At night, they snuck out opened the gates to let their whole army in, who had been hiding in an island nearby. They took over the city and destroyed it. Helen of Troy was not Helen of Sparta once again, and sat on beautiful embroidered pillows all day long.
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