Have you ever wondered just how did the Olympic Games come to be? The ancient Olympic Games, hosted in Olympia, Greece, were one of the four Panhellenic games in ancient Greece. Over there were numerous athletic games in ancient Greece throughout the Mediterranean Sea, every one of them associated with religious feasts. However four of them transcended neighborhood borders and their reputation traveled across the Greek world, becoming ‘Panhellenic’ (meaning “all-Greeks”). Let’s find out an ext about them!


A ar of the stone starting line at Olympia, which has actually a groove for each foot - Credit: Jamesscottbrown /

1.The Games

Sports competitions in ancient Greece were countless and could be discovered in every edge of the Mediterranean, whereby the Greek human being flourished. Every city-state would host a sporting activities competition along with their spiritual holidays, making sure to honor their Gods and raise your prestige, political and also ideological, and also income in ~ the same time. Those Sacred gamings have been just one of the most important institutions in old Greece, v their impact being clearly shows to the whole Greek world across time. All four of the Panhellenic Games offered the exact same prize for the winners: a simple wreath of the sacred tree of the respective patron God.

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Olympic Games

The old Olympic games were following in the sanctuary of Olympia, in honor of Zeus, king that the Olympian Gods. There are numerous traditions and also mythological stories around the development of the Olympic Games. Among them features the establishment of the gamings to Hercules, one of Zeus’ demigod sons and also the most well known Greek hero; another to Pelops, the King that gave his name to Peloponnese; and another to Zeus himself. The an initial Olympic games were hosted in 776 BC and were organized every 4 years after that. In ~ first, they contained only one contest, the race (Stadio). Steadily, much more and an ext contests were added like the pentathlon, wrestling, boxing, chariot race, pankration and others. The prize for the victors to be a wreath that oleaster (wild olive). One month prior to the begin of the Games, the coordinators would proclaim the sacred truce. Wars would cease during that period, to permit athletes and also spectators to take trip to Olympia for the Games. The Olympic games were, there is no a doubt, the most important Sacred games of ancient Greece and their call spread easily throughout the Greek world. Soon, the Olympics ended up being the prize of Panhellenic unity. As time walk on, Olympia"s politics position and importance expanded. Indigenous a basic place of worship, it advanced into a sanctuary complete of intricate temples, through thousands of world traveling over there to worship Zeus and also be part of the prestigious Games. The Olympiad was one of the methods the old Greeks measure up time, using the year of each Olympic games as a starting point. The school of the Olympic games lasted for an ext than 1000 years, until in 394 AD, the Christian roman Emperor Theodosius ns banned every pagan festivals. The games were revitalized in 1896 and the very first modern Olympic games were hosted in Athens, after about 14 centuries.

Hint! Today, ancient Olympia is among the most well known archeological website in Greece and also it is even possible to run on its old stadium! Please call us for much more details if you wish to take a pilgrimage to Olympia or have actually a guided tourism of the site.

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Pythian Games

The Pythian gamings were being organized in Delphi, in honor of the Olympian God Apollo, the god the light, music, dance and also prophecy. According to the supernatural explanation that its creation, Apollo witnessed Delphi as the perfect spot for the facility of his sanctuary. However, enlarge Gods to be presiding there and a legendary snake, called Python. The Olympian fought against the serpent and won. This is how he gained the surname Pythian, his priestess Pythia and also his Sacred games Pythian. Favor the Olympic Games, the Pythian games were organized every 4 years. The official start date of this Panhellenic games was the age of 582 BC. In ~ first, over there were just musical contests but later sports and also horsing competitions were added. The prize for the victors was a laurel wreath. The festival was organized at the end of August and lasted for around 6-7 days. The preparations for the Sacred games would begin 6 months earlier, with the 9 citizen of Delphi (‘theoroi’) traveling across the world to announce the beginning date the the Pythian. At the very same time, the sacred Truce would certainly start, which lasted because that a year. No conflicts or equipped robberies were enabled during that period, to defend the 9 citizen of Delphi and also the human being that would travel to the sanctuary that Apollo because that the event. Any city-state that broke the truce would be instantly banned indigenous the Pythian Games and also the Oracle the Apollo. Kings, princes and also rulers throughout the Mediterranean people would travel for months to arrive at Delphi and also take part in the good festivities the August. Delphi was certainly the ‘Omphalos’, the center of the world, a political, societal and cultural center that the civilized people of antiquity.

Hint! Visiting Delphi today is among the most famous day trips indigenous Athens. You can join a personal Delphi tour v an experienced licensed guide and also discover the ancient rituals you had to pass before asking because that an oracle native Apollo and also the preparations because that the Pythian Games!