The Trojan Women



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The Greek goddess of women, marriage, and birth. She is the sister of Poseidon and is both Zeus’s sister and wife. Along with Athena and Aphrodite, Hera participated in a beauty contest judged by Paris. Because the Trojan Paris did not select her as the winner, Hera sided with the Greeks in the Trojan War.

Hera Quotes in The Trojan Women

The The Trojan Women quotes below are all either spoken by Hera or refer to Hera. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Cost of War Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the University of Chicago Press edition of The Trojan Women published in 2013.
Line 1-97 Quotes

The will of the Argive Hera and Athena won
its way against my will. Between them they broke Troy.
So I must leave my altars and great Ilium,
since once a city sinks into sad desolation
the gods’ state sickens also, and their worship fades.

Related Characters: Poseidon (speaker), Athena, Hera
Page Number: 23
Explanation and Analysis:
Line 860-1059 Quotes

She mothered the beginning of all this wickedness.
For Paris was her child. And next to her the old king,
who would not destroy the infant Alexander, that dream
of the firebrand’s agony, has ruined Troy and me.
This is not all; listen to the rest I have to say.
Alexander was the judge of the goddess trinity.
Pallas Athena would have given him power, to lead
the Phrygian arms on Hellas and make it desolate.
All Asia was Hera’s promise, and the uttermost zones
of Europe for his lordship, if her way prevailed.
But Aphrodite, marveling at my loveliness,
promised it to him, if he would say her beauty surpassed
all others. Think what this means, and all the consequence.
Cypris prevailed, and I was won in marriage: all
for Greek advantage. You are not ruled by barbarians,
you have not been defeated in war nor serve a tyrant.
Yet Hellas’ fortune was my own misfortune. I,
sold once for my body’s beauty, stand accused, who should
for what has been done wear garlands on my head.

Related Characters: Helen (speaker), Hecuba, Menelaus, Athena, Hera, Aphrodite, Priam, Paris
Page Number: 919
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Trojan Women PDF

Hera Character Timeline in The Trojan Women

The timeline below shows where the character Hera appears in The Trojan Women. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Line 1-97
Fate, Fortune, and the Gods Theme Icon
Athena and Hera supported the Greek effort, and Poseidon admits that their will conquered his. (full context)
Line 860-1059
The Cost of War Theme Icon
Fate, Fortune, and the Gods Theme Icon
Duty, Obligation, and Integrity  Theme Icon
Men and Women Theme Icon
Hecuba begins her rebuttal by defending the gods. She is skeptical that Hera and Athena were contestants in the godly beauty contest in which Helen claims Paris won... (full context)