Thursday, February 18, 2010


In 776  B.C., The first recorded Olympic Games took place featuring chariot/horse racing, wrestling, boxing, running, combat, and pentathlon. Women were not admitted. They were held every fourth year until 393 A.D. when an earthquake destroyed Olympia. 
The first successful attempt to emulate the ancient games was formed in France from 1796 to 1798 during the revolution. Later, in 1850, the English revived them until 1866.
In June of 1890 at the Sorbonne in Paris, the first multinational Olympic Games were planned to take place in Athens in 1896. Demetrius Vikelas was elected as the first president. ( From: (

1928: Games were held in Amsterdam and women participated for the FIRST time. Sonja Henie of Norway won the ice skating championship.

1932:  Winter Games held at Lake Placid for the first time.

1964:  Olympic Games held in Tokyo. U.S. wins 37 Gold Medals, USSR wins 41

1968:  Games in Mexico City. US takes 45 medals USSR gets 29

1976:  Held in Montreal 32 Asian and African countries withdraw because of political issues.

1988 Winter games held in S. Korea. Ben Johnson from Canada breaks the 100 meter world record but is disqualified for taking drugs. (From: “The timetables of History the New third revised edition by Bernard grun.)

The 5 intertwined rings of the Olympic symbol represent the five inhabited continents including North and South America as one.

What I find interesting about this process is that the Olympic motto expresses the philosphy that the most important thing is not winning medals but in taking part in the sport. Unfortunately, we don’t hear that very often either from the Olympic Committee or from the participants. Maybe we should focus more on the struggle and challenge of making it to the Olympics than on “who wins what.”  It's enjoyable to watch the events regardless of who wins.

I think the atheletes should all get a “participation medal.” Let’s face it, those who perform under such stress are already the "best of the best."

What do you think?
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  1. I like all of this history about the olympics. It is interesting some of the things that happened in the history of the olympics. I agree that more credit should be given to all of the athletes.

  2. i agree! Let's just all have some fun and play some sports. :)

  3. A partisipation medal...where are we 2nd grade.
    A good idea Jack

  4. Anonymous, i understand that not all athletes should get a medal. I play college basketball and trust me it would be a disappointment if we won the championship and everyone got a trophy. But All of the teams in my confrence get credit for being in the playoffs. That is what I meant by all of the olympians should get credit.

  5. Having been a life-long athlete, I have to agree. Everyone who trains and plays enough to qualify for the Olympics deserves respect for the unknown hours and pain and sacrifice they have endured for a chance to compete against the best. These folks are literally willing to die to just get a chance to be there. Such dedication is to be respected.

  6. Yes, I hope for the sake of the future of politics, especially, that the sense of competition gets focused more on solving problems of human suffering - working together, competing with the contradictions to a collective vision. Judi

  7. Very interesting tidbits makes watching the Olympics more fun. I'm going to post you on my FB page. Thanks Dorthy.


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