Occupation: Wood Nymph
Location: the woods of Mount Ida
City of Residence: Troy
Oenone was an unlucky wood nymph. She lived on Mount Ida, learning the healing arts (some say from Rhea herself) and frolicking merrily about until she happened to meet Paris of Troy, who was at that time merely a shepherd, herding his flocks on the slopes of Mount Ida. They consorted for a while (long enough for Oenone to bear Paris a son, Corythus-- some sources say two sons.) Then, three goddesses appeared on Mount Ida and asked Paris to judge which of them was the most beautiful.
Poor Oenone! Not only was Paris ogling three goddesses, but they were bribing him. (See Judgement of Paris for more info.) Aphrodite, the winner of the contest, offered Paris the most beautiful woman in the world, Helen of (at the time) Sparta, as a bribe, and Paris being Paris, he soon thought no more about Oenone and set his sights for Sparta and the incredibly beautiful Helen. Also discovering that he was a prince, Paris abandoned his shepherd's life and bid Oenone farewell.
Before he left, however, Oenone promised him that if he ever were wounded in battle, he could return to her and she would heal him, using her knowledge. How nice. Paris went off, got Helen, and the Trojan War occurred. He survived nine years of it unscathed (due mostly to the fact that he didn't fight much.. not on the battlefield, anyway) but was wounded in the last year by a poisoned arrow. Ouch. Luckily, he remembered Oenone and headed off to Mount Ida to beg her to heal him.
When a guy leaves you for nine years for another woman and then comes crawling back asking you to heal him fo a mortal wound, chances are you're a little sore. Oenone sure was, and refused to heal Paris, regretting her decision too late and rushing to him, only to find that he was dead. Nonetheless, he was the love of her life, and when she saw them place his body on the funeral pyre, she threw herslef on top of him and they burned together. (Talk about burning love...)
According to legend, two roses grew up over their grave, twined together to symbolize their eternal love. Eternal love? What about those nine years? What about the whole Trojan War? Some legends are just too crazy.