In Greek mythology, Achilles is a prominent Greek hero from the Trojan War. He was the son of Peleus and Thetis, a sea nymph. Achilles is commonly characterized as a powerful leader possessing aggressive, warrior-like skills.
Fact 1. Achilles is the main character in Homer’s epic The Iliad and is widely worshipped as a hero for his warrior-like deeds.
Fact 2. A mythological centaur, called Chiron, initially mentored Achilles. On finding Achilles too difficult to handle, he had returned Achilles to his mother, Thetis.
Fact 3. As his parents were aware that Achilles would die at Troy, they disguised him as a girl amongst the womenfolk at the court of King Lycomedes of Skyros.
Fact 4. It is legendarily known that Achilles was protected except for his heels. In her attempt to make Achilles immortal, Thetis had bathed Achilles in the river Styx, but the heel by which she held Achilles was inadvertently untouched as she did not want to wet her fingers.
Fact 5. Odysseus saw through Achilles’ disguise as a girl by requesting Achilles to blow a horn. He managed to persuade Achilles to get involved in the war with Troy.
Fact 6. The Trojan War was based on the rescue of Helen from the Trojan Prince Paris. Helen was the wife of Melenaus
Fact 7. During the war with Troy, Achilles captured a beautiful woman called Briseis and took ownership of her. However, Agamemnon, Achilles’ superior and commander of the Greek forces, took her.
Fact 8. The animosity between Achilles and Agamemnon grew due to the latter’s character and the stealing of Briseis. Due to the disputes, Achilles refused to be henceforth involved in the Trojan War.
Fact 9. When Achilles subsequently rejoined the war, he was killed due to a wound inflicted on his heel by the Trojan Prince, Paris.
Fact 10. The phrase “Achilles’ heel” is commonly used as a metaphor to reflect vulnerability. It originated in 1810 when it was cited in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s essay “The Friend,” a literary, moral, political, weekly paper.