The Evolution Of The Olympics

June 29, 2012 in Daily Bulletin

As the 2012 London Olympics gets underway, Paul Cartledge took a look at how the games that were first played in Greece centuries ago have evolved over time. Highlights include:

  • Not only were woman not allowed to participate, they weren’t even allowed to watch the events when the Greek games were first played.
  • Perhaps this was because all of the (male) athletes were nude during the competition.
  • There were no bronze or silver medals. The winner received a wreath made from sacred trees. Their home city might also have rewarded them.
  • The Olympics was originally a religious event.

To read more including how the sports that athletes compete in have evolved, the ancient Greek word for “exercise”, who the original Olympics honoured, the strange location of the original stadium, the one event where athletes were allowed to wear clothes, why the game began to incorporate ‘barbarians’, and the Hitler connection, click here.

Source: BBC