The Ancient Greek Olympics began around 700 BC in honor of the Greek god Zeus. Only Greek nationals could participate, and women were not allowed to watch. The games took place every four years, and in 472 the games were expanded from a one-day event to a five-day event. The first day of the event was dedicated to sacrifices, while the second day was the foot-race, which was the main event of the games. There were four types of races:
-Stadion, in which runners sprinted for one stade (192 meters, which was the length of the stadium)-2-stade race, in which runners ran for 384 meters-A long-distance run which ranged from 7 to 24 stades (1,344 meters to 4,608 meters)-A 2-4 stade race in which runners wore full armor
The rest of the days involved wrestling, boxing, and the pancratium, which was a combination of wrestling and boxing. Horse-racing was also an event, but was confined to the wealthy because each entrant needed to own his own horse. After the horse race was the pentathlon, which was a series of five events: sprinting, long-jumping, javelin-hurling, discus-throwing, and wrestling.
Also, it was considered the high point of your life to win (to the point where Diagoras was told “die now” after winning; there was nothing left to live for after doing so well), and everyone had to compete in the nude.
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