When he was born, Priam was given the name Podarces. When Heracles was trying to kill him, Podarces managed to save himself by giving the demigod a golden veil that was made by his sister, Hesione. After this event, Podarces changed his name to Priam.
Towards the end of the Trojan War, when Achilles had already killed Priam's son, Hector, and had desecrated the body by tying it on his chariot, Priam appeared in front of the Greek hero and pleaded to give him his son's body back, so that it can be buried. Achilles initially refused to give it back; Priam broke in tears and told Achilles to pity him, as he had suffered more than anyone else on the earth. Achilles was eventually persuaded to return the body to the Trojans, and agreed to a nine-day truce between the two sides, so that there could be a proper burial and funeral games.