After reading The Iliad and learning about the gods and goddesses, it is obvious that there were many sacrifices made throughout the poem by different characters. Some of the sacrifices made were extremely crucial while others resulted in death. The reason for sacrifice varied depending on the situation and whose life may be put on the line, and even those who were considered heroes had to make great sacrifices at one point or another. There are many great heroes throughout this poem who sacrificed anything to achieve glory, but there are others who did so to save their loved ones. Three important times sacrifices occurred were during the abduction of Helen, when Agamemnon kidnapped the daughter of the priest of Apollo, and Helen of Troy was known as the fairest, most beautiful woman in the world, and the goddess among women. Throughout the literature, Helen is mentioned only a few times, but she played a big role in sacrifice making. Women were known as possessions in the domain of the Iliad, and Helen was viewed as a prize possession by many.
Helen of Troy was married to the leader of Sparta, King Menelaus. Their marriage soon became full of conflict when Prince Paris of Troy came to the wedding, and later chose Helen to claim the golden apple and be known as the fairest. After Helen was chosen, she was taken by Paris and this caused even greater conflict and resulted in the war. Menelaus urges Paris to bring his wife back home, and after acting like a coward Paris finally decides to fight. They decided whoever won could claim Helen as their wife, and the fight would come to an end. Many lives were sacrificed during the war so that Helen could return to Sparta safely and even then, that was not enough to bring Helen home.
They then came to believe the only way to bring Helen home was to sacrifice Agamemnon’s daughter, Iphigenia. Their marriage was sacrificed, along with many lives. Finally, after the many lives were sacrificed and lost Helen triumphantly returned home to Sparta. Chryseis was taken by Agamemnon as a war prize years after wartime. Her father, Chryses, who was the priest of Apollo, begged Agamemnon to bring his daughter back to him. Chryses offered him a vast ransom, but Agamemnon still refused to return Chrysies.
The priest then prayed to the Apollo in hopes of assistance in getting his daughter back. The Apollo brought affliction among the Greek army, which resulted in the death of numerous soldiers. As a priest sacrificing the lives of others was not easy, but as a father, he was willing to do everything in his power to bring his daughter back. After all his efforts, Agamemnon then turns over and says he will only return Chryseis if her father is willing to sacrifice Briseis as reimbursement.
Agamemnon then sent Chryseis back to her father and sends a messenger to have Briseis brought to him in exchange. Chryses is so pleased to see his daughter, though it took sacrifices that were difficult to go through with he was willing to do whatever it took to be with his daughter.