The Olympics, the most popular show on TV every two years. The Olympics are very old, older then you would think, they are over 1,500 years old. The Olympics were created by the Greeks, and were held every four years, back then “Four years” was called an Olympiad. The original Olympics Games were not invented by anybody. They were created in month Apollonius in year that we now know as 776 B. C. , there was a great foot race in a meadow beside the river Alpheus at Olympia, and the one man named Coroebus was the winner.
He was crowned with an olive wreath of wild olive, a garland woven from the twigs and leaves of the tree that Hercules had sought in the lands of the Hyperboreans and planted in the sacred grove near the temple of Zeus at Olympia. Therefore, Coroebus, a youth of Elis, was the very first Olympian of whom we anything more than a legendary record, this was basically how the Olympics were created.
Compare Modern Olympics to Ancient Greek Olympics The very first civilized Games were held at Olympia, in Southern Greece in the 700 B. C. ’s.
When it was time for the Great Games, and there was a war, the cities would make a temporary truce so that the athletes could make it to Greece in safety, and then they would continue the war after the Olympics were over so that they could support their athlete. “The Ancient Olympics were rather different from the Modern Games.
There were fewer events, and only free men who spoke Greek could enter, instead of Athletes from any country. Also, the games were always held at Olympia, instead of moving around to different sites every time”(Daniels, 1). Like our Olympics, though, winning Athletes were heroes who put their hometowns on the map. One young Athenian nobleman defended his political reputation by mentioning how he entered seven chariots in the Olympic chariot-race. This high number of entries made both the Aristocrats and the Athens look very wealthy and powerful”(Daniels, 1). During the games, only the men could compete, they had strict rules about women when it came to the Olympics, like for example; only non-married women could watch, and if a married women was caught watching the games she was thrown off of a cliff, even if her husband was in the Olympics!
That meant that they could not watch their husbands in the Olympics. Sometimes if the husband was in the Pankatron the husband could have lost a fight, or even died, so sometimes the wives would never see her husband again, after they left to do what they liked to do. Events such as sprinting, long jump, and discus throw, javelin throw and wrestling are in the modern Olympic Games Summer Games. Other sports are excluded from the Olympics because they were way too dangerous.
Chariot Racing, was one of the most popular sports in the Great Games in Greece, it was excluded from the modern Games because the chariot races were known to injure people and sometimes killing people, a lot of historical heroes, and Biblical heroes, such as Ben-Hur, are told of being involved in a chariot race. Another reason that chariot racing was excluded was that it was too unpredictable, and that they would not be able to reduce the amount of injuries and deaths because they were too unpredictable.
We got the name Olympics because in the Ancient times the Games were held every Olympiad, which was four years. We all owe our thanks to Pierre de Coubertin. Pierre was and is not well known, but he is well the reviver of the Games. In fact, he was not mentioned at all in the first Modern Olympics in 1896, even though he was the technical re-finder. “One of the wonders of the Olympics is its ability to bring people from all over the world together to celebrate in social competition.
Actually being part of that seething mob of humanity is another matter: crowds at Vancouver’s fenced-in Olympic venues move with the velocity of mud, lineups are plentiful and tickets to events not priced out of reach by scalpers are scarce. The Canada Line built for the games proved brilliantly efficient, if you can squeeze on it. And thanks to security fences that circle Olympic venues, early attempts to have your picture taken in front of the Olympic cauldron will contain at least a 40 per cent chain link”(Kingstone,1). Pierre was inspired by the Ancients, reviver of the Games, which were funded by a merchant, and made the Games to be received with open hands by the Greeks, the Olympics made their comeback in Athens on the 6th of April in 1896” (Benson, 21). No one is quite certain where they came from, but only God knows that nobody can guess where they are going, but as I write this report, the Olympic Games are alive and well and living out in the 20th century as one of the most successful products of our time.
The Olympics are a great way at how to look at this Frenchmen, Pierre de Coubertin, really is, even if he is un-known to most people. Of course, the first Olympics, at first, the Olympics were not so easy to put in a package. They had come out in funny shapes, speaking in many tongues, full of flags, bands, and burning torches, awash in sweat, blood, and tears. In the Winter of 1896, George Stuart Robertson, a brilliant and though whimsical student at Oxford, read about the upcoming re-birth of the Olympic Games in Athens on a small sign posted in the window of a London travel agency.
By boat and by train George traveled to Greece in time for the opening of the new Games on March 25. Robertson was a hammer thrower at Oxford; sadly, this event was not in the Modern Olympics, yet. “Since there was no hammer throwing, Robertson entered the shot-put for the discus throw. During his two-week Odyssey, he spent a total of $11(this was a lot of money), finishing in fourth and sixth, respectively, in his two events”(Johnson, 16). At the outset, the French had determined to be friendly and efficient (even though Pierre was French). Each competitor had been given a cozy sort of uestionnaire that asked among other things then the Olympics, like; were you reared as an infant naturally or artificially? What was the color of your first beard? How strong was you grandfather? And so on. What the French planned to do with this information still remains unclear today. As it happened in this Olympiad, the fifth time out, the Modern Olympic Games were starting to get it right, too. Finally. Despite the efforts of re-finder Pierre de Coubertin, many of the fist Olympiads were poorly organized, ineptly run, and sparsely attended.
Nonetheless, there were athletes who preserved, heroes who endured, and performances that set the standards for generations that are yet to come. Highlights of the first Olympiad in Modern times included opening ceremonies. A popular victory in the Marathon for local favorite, Spiridon Louis, a hotly contested fencing competition attended by the Greek Royal Family. “The games were a mere sideshow of the International Exposition in Paris, but that did not faze Olympic Legends such as John Flanagan who’s gold medal in the hammer throw would be the first of three that he would win” (Johnson,21).
When the Olympics made their comeback, it was a most improbable comeback. Given that 1,503 years had passed since the 293rd final edition of the original Olympics era was held in 393 A. D. Theses were the sports at Athens; track and field, fencing, gymnastics, shooting, swimming, tennis, weightlifting, and wrestling. The Greeks dominated at Athens, winning a whole total of 47 medals, well ahead of France’s 11 medals, Germany’s 15 medals, and the United States’ 19 medals. The U. S. did win 11 gold medals though, however, the Greeks only won a total of 10 gold medals.
The first man to win an Olympic championship in 1,503 years almost missed the track meet. James B. Connolly, a maverick either well ahead of his time, or well behind his well needed time(depending on your point of view), caught an Olympic spirit as he read in a magazine in 1895 that the Ancient Greek Games were revived from 393 A. D. The Olympic movement, anxious to establish itself internationally after its grand debut in Athens, moving outside Greece for the 1,500 year plus history of the Games and soon wondered why.
Work Cited Page
Book-Greece, a country study by-Jen Green Published in 1995 in Bernan Lanham, Maryland
Book-Athens to Atlanta 100 Years of Glory by Lee Benson Published by-Commemorative Publications Salt Lake City, Utah, 1994
Book-Rome 1960 by-David Maraniss Published by- Simon & Schuster, July 2008
Book-The Story of the Olympic Games 776 B.C. to 1972 by-John Kieran and Arthur Dayley Published by-J.B. Lippincott Company
Book-Countries of the World, Greece By-Jen Green Published by-National Geographic
Book-The Olympics, A History of the Games by- William Oscar Johnson Published- Oxmoor House, Inc.
Internet source- Http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/Olympics/Sports.html by- Maria Daniels
Internet source-http://www.crystalinks.com/Greek Olympics.html No Author Posted
Periodical-The Insider Olympics by-Anne Kingstone Published by-MacLean’s 3/15/2010 Vol.123 Issue 9