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Polyxena

by Nadia Soewito
Polyxena was the youngest daughter of Priam and Hecuba. During the time when the Greeks and Trojans gathered together in peace for the burial rites of Hector, Achilles spotted Polyxena and immediately fell in love with her. Priam promised the hero her hand if he would use his influence towards his army to grant them peace. Achilles agreed, and made an appointment for an interview with the Trojans in the temple of Apollo, where he came unarmed. But Priam's sons had set a trap for Achilles, and inside the temple Paris (with the help of Apollo) shot Achilles' vulnerable heel with an arrow. Achilles died from the wound.

After the fall of Troy and before the Greek survivors can return home, the ghost of Achilles demands the sacrifice of Polyxena on his grave, mirroring the sacrifice of Iphigenia which enabled them to get a breeze for Troy ten tears before. The princess was dragged to the altar, where the son of Achilles, Neoptolemus, ruthlessly slayed her.


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