Helen of Troy (mythology)

   Helen, in Greek legend, the most beauti­ful woman of antiquity. Her home was at Sparta. She was the daughter of Zeus and Leda. In girlhood, the hero Theseus ran away with her to Athens. Her broth­er Castor brought her back to Sparta. She was finally given in wedlock to Menelaus, the king. Paris, son of Priam, king of Troy, heard of her beauty, and, with the aid of the goddess Aphrodite, won the love of Helen and fled with her to Troy. Here she abode for twenty years. Menelaus, her husband, called all Greece to arms and precipitated the Trojan War. After the death of Paris, and the destruction and sack of Troy, Helen became the mate of the Greek warrior, Deiphobus. When Troy fell Menelaus es­corted her with honor to her Sparta home. Of all the characters in Grecian legend Helen was the most beautiful, the most de­sired, and the least securely possessed. Even after death, so runs the story, her shade was mated with that of Achilles on the Stygian shore.