in Greek legend, the son of Achilles, the hero of the Greek army at Troy, and of Deidamia, daughter of King Lycomedes of Scyros; he was sometimes called Pyrrhus, meaning "Red-haired." In the last year of the Trojan War the Greek hero Odysseus brought him to Troy after the Trojan seer Helenus had declared that the city could not be captured without the aid of a descendant of Aeacus, who had helped to build its walls; Neoptolemus was Aeacus' great-grandson. He fought bravely and took part in the capture of Troy but committed the sacrilege of slaying the aged king Priam at an altar. He married Helen's daughter Hermione, but he carried off as a concubine Hector's widow, Andromache, by whom he was the father of Molossus, ancestor of the Molossian kings. He was murdered at Delphi, where he had gone to demand that Apollo atone for the death of Achilles
Learn more about Neoptolemus with a free trial on Britannica.com.