One lucky History Girls Follower can win a set of all three of Frances Thomas's Girls of Troy titles.
Our competitions are open to UK Followers only.
Just answer the following question in the Comments section below:
"Which character from the Trojan wars interests you most and why?"
Then also send your answer to email@example.com so that we can contact you if you win.
Closing date 7th October
Cassandra is my favorite. She had knowledge of what was going to happen but no one listened to her. Still, she did not give up. I admire her for her determination because a lot of people just give up because they become frustrated when people will not listen to them. Cassandra knew the truth and wasn't afraid to tell it even when she knew she was being perceived as a liar. Had the people had an open mind and listened to Cassandra, the entire outcome would have been different. So for her determination and will, I nominate Cassandra.
As a youngster I spent more time dreaming of the hollow horse than the folk in the trojan wars! what sort of horse did they model it on, and how big! I always thought that it would be more effective if they had just a few inside who crept out and opened a gate to let the army in, rather than an army in its belly! The weight of a wooden horse, so big, plus an army would be too much to move, I always wanted to know how they did it! Sorry it not a person but to me the horse was a character in the war and always held my attention.
Achilles... and particularly his heel, where his mother held him when she dipped him in the River Styx to protect him from being harmed by mortal weapons. If you were Achilles and knew your heel was the one spot where you could be killed, would you wear a heavy armoured boot that crippled you but kept you safe from stray arrows? Or spring around, like Achilles did, daring death? I think the risk would have excited Achilles. His heel reminds me that however invincible a character, it's their vulnerable spot that makes the best story.
For me it has to be Athena. Her attempt to stop the war failed because of one over-zealous soldier, so she set to with her usual efficiency and made sure her side won. With all the murder, rape and general skulduggery that went on, though, she really had her hands full!
The character in the story of Troy who fascinates and interests me is Penelope, wife of Odysseus. She waits faithfully for twenty years for him to return. During that time her strength, loyalty and independence enable her to overcome the personal and public challenges with which she is faced. She determinedly resists the advances of 108 suitors using all of her intelligence and guile to outwit them. Most famously she says she will only marry after she has completed a burial shroud for Odysseus’ father. She is clever and astute and for three years she weaves and then secretly undoes part of her labours. When her subterfuge is discovered she moves in a different direction and sets her suitors the challenge of stringing the bow of Odysseus and firing an arrow through seven axe heads; knowing full well that only Odysseus himself could do this. When her husband returns disguised as a beggar and achieves this, she is still wary, keeping her wits about her, and asks her servant to move the marriage bed. When Odysseus protests that this cannot be done she knows it is him, for only he knows that one leg of the bed is a live olive tree. Penelope’s story chimes with that of my own mother who waited faithfully for my father who, captured in the early weeks of the Second World War spent almost five years in POW camps and returned a changed man.
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