The Ancient Library

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On this page: Helenus – Heliaea – Heliastae – Heliodorus



by her brothers, who took her back to Sparta. She was wooed by numbers of suitors, and at length gave her hand to MSnelaus, by whom she became the mother of one child, Hermlone. In the absence of her husband she was carried away to Troy by Paris the son of Prlamus, taking with her much treasure. This was the origin of the Trojan War. The Trojans, in spite of the calamity she had brought upon them, loved her for her beauty, and refused to restore her to her husband. She, however, lamented the fickleness of her youth, and yearned for her home, her husband, and her daughter. After the death of Paris she was wedded to Delphobus, assisted the Greeks at the taking of Troy, and betrayed Deiphobus into Menelaus' hands. With Menelaus finally she returned to Sparta after eight years' wandering, and lived thence­forth with him in happiness and concord.

According to another story, mainly current after the time of StesIchSrus, Paris carried off to Troy not the real Helena, but a phantom of her created by Hera. The real Helena was wafted through thejiir by Hermes, and brought to Proteus

~~ pt, whence, after the destruction of

Troy, she was taken home by Menelaus. (See pboteds.) After the death of Menelaus she was, according to one story, driven from Sparta by her stepsons, and fled there­upon to Rhodes to her friend Polyxo, who hanged her on a tree. Another tradition represented her as living after death in wedlock with Achilles on the island of Leuce. She was worshipped as the god­dess of beauty in a special sanctuary at Therapne in Laconia, where a festival was held in her honour. She was also invoked like her brothers the Dioscuri, as a tutelary deity of mariners. (See dioscuri.)

HelSnus (Helenas'). The son of Priam and Hecuba, who, like his sister Cassandra, was endowed with the gift of prophecy. When Deiphobus, after the death of Paris, took Helena to wife, Helenus went over to the Greeks; or (as another story has it) was caught by Odysseus in an ambush. 3.8 revealed to the enemy the fact that Troy could not be taken without the aid of NSoptSlemus and Phlloctetes; and he is also said to have suggested the plan of out­witting the Trojans by means of the wooden horse. After the fall of Troy he was carried away by Neoptolemus, and advised him to settle in Epirus. After his death Helenus took Andromache to wife, and became king of the Chaonians.

Hellsea. The name of the great popular Athenian law-court, instituted by Solon. The word was also applied to the locality in which the greatest number of its mem­bers, and sometimes all of them, assembled. The number of the Heliastce, or members of the court, or jurors, was, in the flourishing period of the democracy, 6,000, 600 being taken from each tribe (phyle). The choice of the Hellastce was determined by lot, under the presidency of the archons. No one was eligible who was not a fully quali­fied citizen, and over thirty years of age. On their election, the Heliasts took the oath of office, and were distributed into ten divisions of 500 each, corresponding respec­tively to the ten tribes. The remaining 1,000 served to fill up vacancies as they occurred.

Every Heliast received, as the emblem of his office, a bronze tablet, stamped with the Gorgon's head [or with an owl surrounded by an olive-wreath: Hicks, Hist. Insc.r.TXo. 119], his name, and the number of his division. The different courts were mostly situated near the &g&ra, and distinguished by their colour and their number. On court-days the Thesm6thSt(e assigned them by lot to the different divisions of the Heliasts. Every Heliast was then presented with a staff bearing the number of his court, and painted with its colour. On entering the room he received a ticket, which he ex­hibited after the sitting and thereupon received his fee. This system of paying the jurors was introduced by Pericles, and the fee, originally an obOlfis (about \^d.\ was afterwards increased to three obols.

In some instances only a part of one division of the jurors would sit to try a case; but in important cases several divisions would sit together. Care was always taken that the number should be uneven. The jurisdiction of the Helicea extended to all kinds of suits. In public causes it acted as a court both of first instance and of final appeal. For private causes it was originally only a court of appeal; but in later times these suits also came to be brought before it in the first instance. Hellastse. See heli<ea. HelWdorus (HelwdSriis). A Greek writer of romance, born at Emesa in Phoenicia. He was a pagan Sophist, who probably flou­rished in the second half of the 3rd century a.d. At one time he was erroneously iden­tified with another Heliodorus, bishop of Tricca in Thessaly, who flourished about 390 a.d. A romance of his called

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