Asked • 06/29/19

Is there any connection between Paris of Troy and Paris of Verona?

I just noticed that a character in Shakespeare's *Romeo and Juliet* has the same name as a character in Homer's *Iliad*: **Paris.** In both stories, Paris is one of two men who wish to be with the same woman; Paris of Troy elopes with an already married woman, while Paris of Verona is engaged to marry a woman already in love with someone else. In both stories, Paris ends up dead at the hands of an enemy. **Is there any evidence that this is more than a coincidence?** I've provided some circumstantial evidence, but I don't know much about Shakespeare's sources for the story of Romeo and Juliet, whether earlier versions also featured Paris and whether he always had that name, or indeed whether *those* stories in turn could potentially be traced back to Homer. It's clear at least that Shakespeare knew the story of the *Iliad*, as can be seen from his play *Troilus and Cressida*.

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