Sunday, May 7, 2017

Saturday, May 6th, Olympia, Greece


The morning was spent visiting Sparta, an unimpressive but important historical site containing an amphitheater, acropolis, and no tourists.

Most of us hear the words "in the modern games.." when referring to the Olympics and think there was probably some decades before 1896 when the games weren't really official, or well-organized.  Would you be surprised to learn that they were going on for 1,200 years before the site was buried in 26 feet of flooded soil around 600 AD?

Or that one of the wonders of the ancient world was a 4-meter high statue of Zeus adorned with jewels which seemed to move when reflecting the light from an olive oil pool in front of it?

Without a standing army, how does a country keep their people fit enough to ward off their enemies for melleniums?  The celebration of physical prowess became the national obsession.  Preliminary contests of 13 events took place all around the country for a year before the games. Statues of the winners, and plaques announcing the cheaters lined the long entryway into the stadium.

To see all of the photos taken today, click on Saturday, May 6th, Olympia, Greece.

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