Helen

[hel-uh n]
noun
  1. Also called Helen of Troy. Classical Mythology. the beautiful daughter of Zeus and Leda and wife of Menelaus whose abduction by Paris was the cause of the Trojan War.
  2. a female given name.

Origin of Helen

< French Hélène < Latin Helena < Greek Helénē, of obscure origin, probably the name of a pre-Greek vegetation goddess; often linked by folk etymology with helénē, helánē torch, St. Elmo's fire, an unrelated word
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for helen of troy

Helen

noun
  1. Greek myth the beautiful daughter of Zeus and Leda, whose abduction by Paris from her husband Menelaus caused the Trojan War
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for helen of troy

Helen

fem. proper name, from French Hélène, from Latin Helena, from Greek Helene, fem. proper name, probably fem. of helenos "the bright one." Among the top 10 popular names for girl babies in the U.S. born between 1890 and 1934.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

helen of troy in Culture

Helen of Troy

In classical mythology, the most beautiful woman in the world, a daughter of Zeus by Leda. Her abduction by Paris led to the Trojan War (see also Trojan War). Helen's was “the face that launched a thousand ships”: the entire Greek army sailed to Troy to get her back. (See Judgment of Paris.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.