Friday, August 1, 2008

1896 Summer Olympics in Athens


The original Olympic Games were first recorded in 776 B.C. in Olympia, Greece until 393 A.D. The next game was in 1859 after Evangelos Zappas sponsored the first modern international Olympic games. The International Olympic Committee was founded in 1894 under the leadership of a French nobleman, Coubertin. The first IOC president was a Greek by the name of Demetrius Vikelas. Two years later, in 1896, the first Olympic Games of the modern era were held in Athens.

From April 6 to 15, 1896 the Games of the I Olympiad in Athens was held. It was gauged a success despite many obstacles. The Greek Marathoner Spiridon Louis won the gold in the 42 km race. After the games, Coubertin and the IOC were petitioned by prominent figures, Greece's King George included to hold all the following Games in Athens. However, the 1900 Summer Olympics were already planned for Paris and, except for the Intercalated Games of 1906, the Olympics did not return to Greece until the 2004 Summer Olympics.

The Summer and Winter Olympics were held at the same time, every four years, until 1996. The Summer Olympics was hosted by Atlanta in 1996 while the Winter Olympics by Nagano, Japan in 1998. From then on the summer and winter Olympics were held two years apart. By 2010, the Olympic Games will have been hosted by 41 cities in 22 countries. The upcoming 2008 Summer Olympics will be held in Beijing, and the 2010 Winter Olympics will be held in Vancouver.

Host Cities of Past Summer Olympics

1896 Athens 1916 cancelled 1940 cancelled 1964 Tokyo 1988 Seoul
1900 Paris 1920 Antwerp 1944 cancelled 1968 Mexico city 1992 Barcelona
1904 St. Louis 1924 Paris 1948 London 1972 Munich 1996 Atlanta
1906 Athens 1928 Amsterdam 1952 Helsinki 1976 Montreal 2000 Sydney
1908 London 1932 Los Angeles 1956 Melbourne 1980 Moscow 2004 Athens
1912 Stockholm 1936 Berlin 1960 Rome 1984 Los Angeles 2008 Beijing



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