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The Trojan War has gathered a great circle of tales and poems which have fascinated people for generations. One reason is that until Heinrich Schielman discovered it, no one knew where Troy was. Another was the clever way in which the Spartans won the war.

The story goes that Troy was a fortified city which had grown up in Asia Minor. Young Paris, son of Priam, king of Troy, visited the Spartan king, Menelaus. While he was there he fell in love with king Menelaus' beautiful wife Helen, and kidnapped her back to Troy.

This, of course, was a terrible thing and all of the warriors of Greece rose up to help king Menelaus in his time of need. Agamemnon, king of Mycenae and brother to Menelaus, was put in charge of the army. With him went many heroes including the lion hearted Achilles and the crafty Odysseus, king of Ithaca. More than 1200 ships carried thousands of Greek clansmen across the Aegean Sea to destroy Troy and get Helen back. But the Trojans were great fighters. For 10 years they fought with the Greeks, but the Trojans always retreated to the protection of their fortified city.

Finally, Odysseus had a brilliant idea. They build a giant horse of wood. The horse was beautiful and cleverly designed. They placed the horse at the gates of Troy. Then the army retreated, making it look like they had left. The Trojans became curious about the horse. They opened the gates and dragged it into their city. Many people came to admire the horse. And be cause the army that had come to rescue Helen seemed to have left, they celebrated that night.

But at night, when everyone was asleep, a hidden door on the side of the horse opened. A rope was thrown out and from the belly of the horse came a hundred warriors, quietly sliding down the rope. Several men ran to the gates and opened them. The army from Greece rushed in and easily overtook the foolish people of Troy.

Helen was returned to Menelaus and the Greeks burned the city of Troy to the ground to punish them. It is said that the only thing left on the pot that had once been Troy was the 30 foot tall Trojan Horse.

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