A picture depicting The Trojan war, where men warriors are fighting with each using spear and shield.

History and Origin of the Trojan Virus Name

The word trojan is often referred to as “a native of or inhabitant of troy”. In today’s era, its known as Trojan Virus or simply Trojan. This is a type of malware which misleads the users of computer of its true purpose. By putting on a harmless façade, this trojan virus can get into anyone’s system by deceiving the users to download a program. This malware got its name from a classic war of the ancient Greek. A war that inspired a lot of poets and writers to create a work based on and now, here I am to write about the same.

Behind the causes of war

Thetis, daughter of sea god Nereus, was married to Peleus, son of King and all the gods were invited to grace the wedding with their presence. But the goddess of chaos and discord, Eris, was stopped at the door by Hermes, son of Zeus. She felt insulted about the fact that Zeus ordered Hermes to prevent her from attending the wedding and threw her gift that was for Thetis. Her gift was a golden apple on which the words “To the fairest” was engraved. Hera, Athena and Aphrodite claimed the golden apple and fought over the gift. Zeus decided to send the goddesses to Paris, prince of Troy, to resolve the quarrel and chose who can claim the golden apple.

When the goddesses met Paris, he was unable to decide to whom he should give away the golden apple. Sensing his turmoil, the goddesses bribed him with various offers. Hera offered him political power and control of all Asia while Athena offered knowledge on war and potential of a greatest warrior. But it was Aphrodite’s offer that made him choose her over the other two goddesses. She promised him the love of the most graceful woman to be on earth, Helen. This incident was later known as JUDGEMENT OF PARIS.

Thetis and Peleus wedding
Marriage of Thetis and Peleus (Image credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Judgement of Paris
Judgement of Paris (Image credit: Google)

Helen’s marriage

On the other hand, Helen of Sparta, was pursued by a lot of admirers from around the world. King Tyndareus, Helen’s father, was unable to select one suitor from all as he was afraid of their reaction’s aftermath. One of the suitors was Odysseus of Ithaca who suggested a plan to him. The plan was to make all suitors take oath to defend her marriage, irrespective of who is chosen. With some obvious protest, they all swore in on the oath. Tyndareus selected Menelaus for his daughter as he had power and money. Menelaus came on behalf of his brother Agamemnon but still got married to Helen. Together, they both ruled Sparta for around ten years.

Helen Of Sparta
Helen of Sparta, most beautiful woman (Image credit: Pinterest)

The actual cause of war

Aphrodite was able to make her claim on the golden apple because of the offer she made to Paris. This resulted in Paris going to Sparta under the disguise of being on a diplomatic mission. But his actual mission was to bring his promised Ladylove, Helen, to Troy with him. Paris was, in fact, successful in going back to Troy with Helen but its not exactly sure how he was able to do it. Some theories like Herodotus’, an ancient Greek historian, suggested that Helen was abducted. But some theories like Sappho’s, an ancient Greek poet, asserted that she willing left with Paris to Troy.

There is also some uncertainty as to where Helen was during the ten years of war. Herodotus believed that Helen was in the lands of Egypt, while Homer suggested in his famous work ILIAD that Helen was at Troy in his ancient Greek literature. Meanwhile, Menelaus who came to learn of Helen’s disappearance had called all the suitors including his brother, Agamemnon and Odysseus to help him get his wife back. And this was the real cause of the Trojan War.

Paris abducting Helen
Paris of Troy abducting Helen of Sparta (Image credit: Ancient Origins)
Paris with Helen
Paris with Helen (Image credit: Grunge)

The war

Beginning

King Agamemnon had sent his representative to gather all the suitors who sought after Helen to keep their oath. Along with suitors, Agamemnon started the journey to Troy to help his brother retrieve his wife back. Achilles, son of Thetis and Peleus, and Ajax, nephew of Peleus, played a huge role throughout the war. Achilles was only fifteen years old when he joined the war. The Achaeans, that is the Greeks, reached Aulis. As none of them were unaware of the route to Troy, they unintentionally landed on Mysia and its king Telephus, was injured by Achilles. According to Homer’s Iliad, after their arrival on Aulis, Agamemnon realized that he was punished by the goddess Artemis, for killing a scared deer. Due to this, he was forced to sacrifice his daughter, Iphigenia, to placate Artemis. There is no concrete theory that confirmed Iphigenia being sacrificed.

The First Death

Calchas, a prophet who received the ability to foresee the future from Apollo, prophesied that the first to step their foot on Troy would be killed. Protesilaus was the first to advance but Odysseus threw his shield to ensure that Protesilaus was not the first person land on Troy. This trick was proved to be unsuccessful as he was later killed by Hector, prince of Troy who led the trojan army and allies against the Greeks. After Protesilaus’ death, his brother, Podarces took over the role of commander of the troops.

Into the War

The Achaeans continued their attacks on Troy for nine years during which Ajax and Achilles were vigorously involved in the war. Achilles was able to annihilate eleven cities and twelve islands of Troy. The Achaeans couldn’t triumph over the Troy completely due to which they were to maintain their connections to interior of Asia Minor. This helped them in getting the required support continuously until the end of war.

Some time after the war broke out, Hector was able to convince both sides’ armies to come for a meet. In the meet, he dared for a single combat between him and one of Greek warriors. Ajax was chosen by draw of lot and battled Hector. Ajax was able to damage Hector’s shield with a rock yet Hector was not able to destruct Ajax’s shield. Apollo interfered the duel and sun set by the it got over. After this, Hector gave Ajax a sword, who used this to kill himself. Ajax gave him a gridle, that Achilles tied to his chariot when he dragged Hector’s corpse in the Trojan soil.

Towards the end of 9th year, the Achaeans’ warriors were worn out from the seemingly never ending war and the lack of food supplies. They demanded to their leaders to return back home. However, they averted the crisis thanks to Agamemnon.

A picture depicting The Trojan war, where men warriors are fighting with each using spear and shield.
Trojan war (Image credit: Greek mythology)

Death of Hector and Achilles

The troops were constantly fighting one other and during one such time Zeus stepped in to help the Trojans break into the Achaean camp. The trojan troops set Protesilaus’s ship and were about to set fire on other Achaean’s ship. Once Achilles learnt that it was Hector who set Protesilaus’s ship on fire, he sent his best friend Patroclus to the battlefield. Patroclus led the army and fought with armor of Achilles but he was later killed by Hector. After killing Patroclus, Hector removed Achilles’ armor from his corpse. Enraged at the news of Patroclus death, Achilles swore to take his revenge on Hector. Hector was deceived by Athena to remain on the outside walls of the Troy, where Achilles killed him. Achilles later went around the grounds of troy with Hectors body attached to his chariot.

There is a lot of vagueness in the story behind Achilles’ death as there are lot of different renditions regarding it. Some theories believe that Paris killed him with a poisoned arrow under the guidance of Apollo. As opposed to this some say that Achilles fell in love with the Trojan princess, Polyxena, and asked her hand for marriage to Priam, King of Troy. Priam agreed to this under the condition that the war must be stopped and both side become allies. Paris killed Achilles fearing that he would have to give up on Helen if Achilles is married to Polyxena. While other versions say that Paris killed Achilles by stabbing him in the heel with a knife as he was getting married to Polyxena.

A picture with the face of Hector, Prince of troy and Paris' brother.
Hector, Prince of Troy (Image credit: Pinterest)
An image of Achilles, son of Thetis and Peleus
Achilles, son of Thetis and Peleus (Image credit: Wikipedia)

End of War

Odysseus came up with one final plan to defeat the Trojan. The plan was to make big hallow horse, which is a scared animal to trojans, and hide the Greek warriors inside. This plan was executed with the help of Epeius, one of the warriors, who built the horse under the supervision of Athena. On the horse these words inscribed, “The Greeks dedicate this thank-offering to Athena for their home return”. The horse was packed with warriors accompanied by Odysseus. The rest of them burnt their camps and went to Tenedos.

Upon discovering the fact that the Greeks have left, the trojans stumbled across the horse. After some debate, they brought the horse back with them to the city. Cassandra, a trojan priestess, warned the trojans against keeping the horse. She was gifted by Apollo to predict the future accurately but also cursed that no one would believe her. Frustrated, she picked up an axe in one hand and an axe in another and darted to the horse. But unfortunately, for her and the Trojans she was stopped, the trojans were unaware of the fact that this would led them to their death. As the night went by, Greeks came out of the horse and attacked the city. Under signal of Sinon, a Greek spy and warrior, the rest of the of troops came from Tenedos. The unsuspecting trojans fell asleep only to be killed by the Greek troops.

A proTrojan Horse
The Trojan Horse built by Epeius under Athena’s guidance (Image credit: BBC)

The Fall of Troy

To say that the attack was the end of Troy would be an understatement. The Troy fell with their entire city covered in blood of the civilians. In spite of the fact that there was proper leader trojans all fought back with all their might to save their nation, family and themselves. They did whatever they can to take out the Achaeans and defend themselves but in vain. None these stopped the Greeks from taking over the Trojans and mass murdered many people.

Ajax the lesser, violated Cassandra, who sought refuge under the shelter of Athena temple. At the temple, Cassandra was holding onto the statue of Athena so tightly, that Ajax the lesser had to push it off from its stand and tugged her. Later he raped her so cruelly, that some believed that the Athena was burning with anger with tears flowing down her from her eyes. Despite helping the Greeks, Athena was enraged over this. Moreover. Cassandra was under the protection of Athena as her supplicant. Due to all these factors, Odysseus prompted the rest of Greek troops to stone Ajax to death but he escaped by running to Athena’s altar.

Troy's fall
Fall of Troy (Image credit: History Hit)

After the War

Once the Achaeans were able to completely destruct the Troy city, they burned the city and shared the treasures won from the war among themselves. Agamemnon was awarded Cassandra and Odysseus was given Hecuba, Priam’s wife while Andromache was rewarded to Neoptolemus. The Achaeans later killed Hector’s son, Astyanax, who was an infant, by throwing from the walls of Troy. It might be done out of their spit for the Troy’s royal family or to possibly end the Troy’s royal lineage or perhaps, to avoid the possibility of a revenge taken by him to avenge his family’s death.

With victory on their side, the Achaeans began their travel to return home after the 10 year long war. Not everyone who participated in the war were able to reach to the safety and comforts of their home and family. Some of them died on while sailing back and some other lost their way to home. Nonetheless some were lucky enough to get home safe and sound. Nestor, who had been on his best code of behavior, was one of the few to travel back home safely. Along, with him the rest of his survived army also went home safe. While some accounts believe that Idomeneus travelled to his safe and sound some don’t believe the same.

Agamemnon ,who faced some stormy weather, reached Agros with Cassandra only to be killed by his wife, Clytemnstra. Nevertheless, there is no clarity regarding how he was killed or IF he was even killed. On the other hand, Odysseus journey back home had a lot of detours…. although he made it back and lived with his Penelope. Penelope was initially unconvinced that Odysseus has come back but he proved to be him by with his unstrung recurve bow.

Greek troops leaving after war
Aftermath of war (Image credit: Classical literature)

Survivors of Troy’s Fall

A Latin poem, Aeneid, by Virgil talks about what happened to the survived citizens of Troy. Aeneas who fought for the Troy was able to escape Greeks, along with the remaining trojans travelled to Italy. He was accompanied by his father, son, his loyal friend, Achates and Mimas as the guide. The trojans jumped from one place to another and spent 7 years until they reached Carthage. It was here that Aeneas got into an affair with Queen Dido. In the end, the gods instructed him to continue with his journey and they make it to Italy. This event may trace Romans’ ancestry back to him. The trojans under the command of Aeneas won the war against Latins and began their life.

Aeneas’ duel with King Turnus to win the Latins (Image credit: Sartle)

This is story behind the TROJAN VIRUS that is now only known to us a computer malware.

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