In Greek mythology, Helen (Greek: Ἑλένη, transl. Helénē) was the daughter of Zeus and Queen Leda, twin sister of Queen Clytemnestra of Mycenae, sister of Castor and Pollux, and wife of King Menelaus of Sparta.
When she was eleven years old she was kidnapped by the hero Theseus, however, her brothers Castor and Pollux took her back to Sparta.
Helen possessed the reputation as the most beautiful woman in the world. Helen had several suitors, which included many of Greece's greatest heroes, and her adoptive father, Tyndareus, hesitated to make a decision in favor of one of them fearing to anger the others.
Finally one of the suitors, Odysseus (whose Latin name was Ulysses), king of Ithaca, resolved the impasse by proposing that all the suitors swear to protect Helen and whichever husband she chose. Helen then married Menelaus, who became king of Sparta.
Helen is described by Homer as having "rosy cheeks." Ibicus, Sappho and Estesychorus refer to her as "blonde."
Helen of Troy
On a trip to Sparta, Paris meets the princess Helen, who is married to Menelaus, brother of Agamemnon, sons of Atreus, king of Mycenae. After nine days entertaining Paris, Menelaus, on the tenth, leaves for Crete, for the funeral rites of Catreu, his maternal grandfather. Helen and Paris flee to Troy, abandoning Hermione, then nine years old;
Menelaus, Agamemnon, and other kings join in a war against Troy. In principle to rescue Helen and avenge Menelaus, but in reality with economic interests as well. The war lasts ten years. Heitor and Achilles die. One day, the Trojans realize that their enemies' camp is empty, and imagine that they have finally abandoned the war.
They find a huge wooden horse there, which they believe to be a gift, and carry it inside their walls. However, it was all just a trap created by Odysseus to invade the enemy territory, so at night, when the Trojans are sleeping, the soldiers start to get off the horse and attack the city, now defenseless. The war is won by the Greeks.
There are several versions about the end of Helen. According to Pausanias, after Menelaus' death, she was driven out of the kingdom by her stepson, Nicostrato.
She went to live with Queen Polixo of Rhodes, who pretended to be her friend, but wanted revenge for the death of her husband Tlepopolymus. When Helen was bathing, the queen had her servants dressed as Erinias hang her.
After her death she went to the island of Pelagos.