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The Olympics

For use with Talking Point worksheets

Moderator: TalkingPoint

The Olympics

Postby TalkingPoint » Sat Jun 26, 2004 9:48 am

The Olympics

Instructions: Read the text below to find the answers to the questions on your worksheet.

The modern Olympic Games were not started by the Greeks but by a member of the French aristocracy, Baron de Coubertin, in 1896. Of course he took the idea from the ancient Greeks who had held annual competitive games at a place called Olympia as early as 776 B.C. Originally it was just a local competition but it wasn't long before people from all over Greece began to gather to compete. The competition expanded from being just a one-day competition in 776 B.C. to being a five-day long festival by 472 B.C. At the start it had involved only athletics and wrestling but by 472 B.C. it had become a festival of various sports including chariot-racing and discus-throwing. Surprisingly, the modern prizes of bronze, silver and gold medals do not date from the original Greek games. In those days the winners received wreaths made from olive branches. The games were stopped in 393 A.D. by the Emperor Theodosius. When the Games were re-started in 1896 sportsmen from more than 10 countries worldwide went to Athens to compete in events both traditional (such as wrestling) and modern (such as cycling and tennis). The Games were stopped only by the two World Wars but they have continued ever since, at four-yearly intervals. The Winter Olympic Games were started in 1924 and are held two years after the Summer Games. 1924 also saw the introduction of the Olympic motto "Citius, Altius, Fortius" (from Latin), which means "Swifter (Faster), Higher, Stronger". Four years later athletic events for women were introduced.

Quick Quiz
Read the clues below and write the solutions on a piece of paper. Then take the first letter of each answer and rearrange them to find the hidden word connected with this Talking Point.
    1. The first modern Olympic Games were held in __________.

    2. The Olympic motto is not in Greek but in __________.

    3. When the Games were re-started in 1896 sportsmen from __________ than 10 countries worldwide went to Athens to compete.

    4. The competition expanded from being just a one-__________ competition in 776 B.C. to being a five-day long festival by 472 B.C.

    5. The games were stopped in 393 A.D. by the __________ Theodosius.
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