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All About The Olympic Games

The first known Olympic Games was recorded in around 776 BC in Olympia, Greece. They
were celebrated until 396 AD.
The Ancient Olympic Games consisted of only one race, the "stade" race, which was the
length of the stadium and between 180 and 240 metres long (we don't know for sure). Over
the years more running races and other events were added, including boxing, wrestling,
chariot racing, long jump, javelin and discus throwing.
Only young men could take part. They had to be free men, and speak Greek. They usually
competed nude, and the prize was a crown of olive leaves (a sign of hope and peace).
Women were not allowed to take part. Married women were not even allowed to watch!

The Modern Olympic Games
A French nobleman, Pierre Fredy, the Baron de Coubertin, born in 1863. When he was
young, Coubertin was a very keen sportsman. As he grew older he developed a passionate
belief that sport could encourage peace throughout the world and bring people from all over
the world together. He revived the idea of the Olympic Games.
Coubertin was inspired by the ancient Olympic Games and travelled around the world,
spending his own money, trying to persuade people to revive them. Eventually he managed
to bring together representatives of many different countries in Paris, in 1894, and the
Olympic Movement was begun.
The first modern Olympic Games were held in Athens in 1896.
Women began to compete in 1900. For many years there were problems for the women
athletes about what to wear, because it was considered very rude to show any part of the
body or even the shape of the body! Can you imagine trying to run and jump covered from
head to foot in clothes?
When Baron de Coubertin founded the Olympic Movement he established the International
Olympic Committee (the IOC) to supervise it, in 1894. He himself served as its president for
29 years, and there have been 8 presidents since then. There were originally 14 members
but the Committee has now grown to over 130 members, all of whom must speak either
French or English. Existing members elect new members as required. The IOC is based in
Lausanne, Switzerland.
"The goal of the Olympic Movement is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world
by educating youth through sport practiced without discrimination of any kind and in the
Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and
fair play."

Altius. rather than Brazil. to symbolize the five continents of the world taking part in the Olympic Games (the Americas are viewed as a single continent. but are now silver covered with a thin layer of gold. The Olympic Torch or Flame is lit in Olympia. for example. second and third win medals: respectively gold. The five interlocking rings (blue. the next Olympics. Stronger" . The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well." The athletes or teams who come first.". So. and Antarctica is omitted). Any city which wishes to host the Games can put their bid to the IOC. Higher. and of course only one city can be successful! Each country has their own National Olympic Committee (NOC). The NOCs represent their countries at the Olympic Games and select their own national teams. Fortius. and even putting forward a bid takes a huge amount of work and is very expensive. Each Olympiad is counted with Roman numerals. black. Only one city from each country can bid. It usually takes many years to prepare. The gold medals aren´t real gold today. Greece and brought to the host city by runners carrying the torch in relay. They were solid gold until 1912. The motto of the Olympic is "Citius. which is Latin for "Swifter. "The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part. yellow. Members of the IOC choose the next venue for the Olympic Games. green. will be hosted by Rio de Janeiro.An Olympiad is the period of four years which starts with a summer Olympic Games. just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. in 2016. silver and bronze. which must be a city rather than a country. as in 1916 during the First World War). and the year of the Games cannot be changed (although Games have been skipped out. and red respectively) of the emblem was originally designed in 1913 by Pierre de Coubertin.