Ancient Olympic Fun Fact 19

2012 is significant in that it is a presidential election year, a leap year, and a summer Olympic year! The modern Olympics, of course, were inspired by the ancient Greek Olympics, a subject I’ve been researching for my work in progress. So in these months leading up to the 2012 London Games, I’ll be posting weekly tidbits about the original athletic festival that started it all.

Here’s this week’s fun fact:

The ancient Olympics had no team competitions.

Some might be surprised by this considering how many team events there are in the modern Olympics. Even individual sports, such as gymnastics, often have a team version. But in ancient Greece, people glorified the physical excellence of the individual, and the festival at Olympia was a celebration of that gift in honor of the gods that bestowed it.

Tune in next week for more about the ancient Olympics!

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