The Ancient Olympics Essay

1059 words - 5 pages

Most people know that the Olympics were started in Greece and that there must be at least one difference between the ancient Olympics and the more recent Olympics.But contrary to common belief the olympics have significally changed from when they first began ,not only has the meaning of the events changed but the athletes able to participate.
One story says that the games were started by Herakles (Roman Hercules) and Alceme. There are other known records of who began the games. The first known written record of the games is in 776 B.C. ,but it is believed that they originated earlier.(D) During the games fighting in Greece would cease so the games could be held. The games were ende in394 ...view middle of the document...

Boxing, chariot racing and other sports were slowly added. In addition to the athletic events, music, oratory, and theater were events in the Olympics. By the 37th olympiad one day of competitions had been extended to five days.(B)
Any free Greek male was entitled to participate in the Olympics. Once an athlete decided to join the Olympics, they had to undergo rigorous training. The training would be held at the nearby city of Ellis a month before the games. During the training any athlete who felt unable to achieve the Olympic standard was allowed to drop out. Any drop outs during the games would be humiliated. In the opening ceremony the athletes had to give their oath before a statue of Zeus in his temple. Then the athletes had to swear over a bloody slice of boars flesh to follow the rules and to play fair.(C) The first award given to the winners were red ribbons ,which were tied around the head and hands. This award was given shortly after the event ended. Next the winners would attend an official award ceremony along with other winners. At the ceremony a wreath of the sacred olive tree was placed on the winners head as his name, the name of his father, and his homeland was announced.(A) In your homeland you would come close to being considered a demigod. After winning at an event you no longer had to work and you would receive privileges.(C)
These are some of the notable athletes:
The cook Coroibus of Ellis won the 200 yard race in 776 B.C.
Asfylos of Croton won 6 olive wreaths. He participated in 3 Olympiads ,the first one for Croton and the last two for Syracuse. After winning for Syracuse his statues in Croton were destroyed and his house was turned into a jail.
Kyniska of Sparta was the first woman victor. She won the 4 horse chariot race in the 96th and 97th Olympiads. Because she was a woman the wreath was given to the owner of the horses.
Leonidas of Rhodes participated in 4 consecutive Olympiads. During those Olympiads he won 12 victory wreaths.
Melankomas of Caria is most...

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