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The Olympic Games – then and now
2012-05-04

4 May 2012

The first victory at the Olympic Games in the little Greek town of Olympia was recorded in the year 776 B.C. For the next 1 000 years, athletes congregated to compete at Olympia every four years in August/September.

The 27th modern Olympic Games will commence in London, England on 27 July this year. Counting from 1896, the year of the first modern Olympic Games, this year’s Games should have been the 30th. However, the Games did not take place three times: In 1916 during the First World War and again in 1940 and 1944 during the Second World War.

Prof. Louise Cilliers of the Department of Classical and Near Eastern Studies will look at certain aspects of the ancient Olympic Games and compare them with the nature of the items and the records of today in a lecture titled “The Olympic Games – then and now” on Tuesday 8 May 2012.

Numerous questions will be discussed, such as what the nature of the records are that were held in the absence of stop watches and standard distances, why the games were held in August/September from the start, what the differences are between ancient and modern items, where all the symbols that have become associated with the Olympic Games came from, and if Baron de Coubertin was right in his glorifying of amateur sport during the ancient times.

  • Place: Senate Hall (CR Swart Building)
  • Time: 19:00 to 20:00
     

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