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History of the Olympic Games

A brief history of the Olympics

According to the Greek history, the first Olympic Games in the Greek Antiquity can be traced back to the 776 BC. The games were dedicated to the 12 Olympian Gods and were hosted on the ancient green plains of Olympia, the place was famous for its magnificent great temples of the two gods Zeus and his wife Hera. The games initially had a very religious character combined by a number of ancient sport events, which many of those were based on the ancient Greek mythology.

The ancient Olympic Games had an important position in the life of the Ancient Greeks. The Olympiad it was a time of union, with a four-year interval. The participants came from every corner of the Greek world to compete for the ultimate prize, the olive wreath and the return to their city-states as heroes. But the Olympic values apart from the victory, it was themselves which had the special meaning in the Games, the noble competition and effort to combine the body, mind, and will in a balanced whole.

As the Olympics developed, so did developed the procedures such as the standard schedule of the events and the Olympic Truce. They Games continued for almost 12 centuries, until the Roman Emperor Theodosius banned them, in 393 AD, accusing them as pagan cults.

The Olympics is a sporting event for many different sports that is every four years. The original Olympic Games were held in the ancient Greek city of Olympia that since the 10th century BC. was a religious and political meeting place.
The first recorded celebration of the Games at Olympia was in 776 BC. It is almost certain that this was not the first time that the Games were held. Then the Games were only local and had only one race, the race of the stadium.

Although the Olympic games were originally held on the fields around the temple of Zeus, with the growth of the Games increased also the buildings of the Stadium. Finally Ancient Olympia had a stadium that offered enough space to 40,000 spectators. The Olympic Games which were held every four years, were one of the four Pan-Hellenic Games. The purpose of Olympic Games was for young men to show their physical qualities and to enforce the relationship between the various Greek cities. Only Greek men were allowed to participate in the Olympics but not women.

From 776 BC the Olympic Games, became more important in the ancient Greece reaching the height of their fame in the 5th and 6th century BC. The Olympics also had religious significance since there were dedicated to Zeus, whose huge statue was standing in Olympia. The number of sports was twenty and the celebrations were held for several days. The winners of the games were admired and immortalised through poems and statues. The prize for the winner was a crown of olive branches.

The Games gradually lost their importance when the Romans conquered Greece and when Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire. The Games were regarded more as a pagan celebration, and in 393 AD, the Emperor Theodosius banned them completely. So ended a period of one thousand years during which the Olympics were to be conducted every four years thereafter.

The Olympic games revived by the French Baron Pierre de Coubertin in the late 19 th century. The Games of the Olympiad, also known as Summer Olympics, taking place every four years since 1896 onwards, with the exception of the years during the World Wars. In 1924 began the Winter Olympics, for winter sports. Since 1994, the Winter Games are not held the same year with the Summer Olympics.In July 2012 the Olympics will be held in London UK.

olympics opening ceremony

ATHENS OLYMPICS 2004