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  • Troilus is a legendary character associated with the story of the Trojan War. The first surviving reference to him is in Homer's Iliad which is believed to have been composed by bards and sung in the late 9th or 8th century BC. In Greek mythology, Troilus is a young Trojan prince, one of the sons of King Priam and Hecuba. Prophecies link Troilus' fate to that of Troy and so he is ambushed and murdered by Achilles. Sophocles was one of the writers to tell this tale. It was also a popular theme among artists of the time. Ancient writers treated Troilus as the epitome of a dead child mourned by his parents. He was also regarded as a paragon of youthful male beauty. In Western European medieval and Renaissance versions of the legend, Troilus is the youngest of Priam's five legitimate sons by Hecuba. Despite his youth he is one of the main Trojan war leaders. He dies in battle at Achilles' hands. In a popular addition to the story, originating in the 12th century, Troilus falls in love with Cressida, whose father has defected to the Greeks. Cressida pledges her love to Troilus but she soon switches her affections to the Greek hero Diomedes when sent to her father in a hostage exchange.

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