History of the Modern Olympics
Before the Modern Games
The first recorded ancient Olympic Games were held in 776 BC, held in Olympia, Greece (read more about the Ancient Olympic Games). The Ancient Olympics continues every four year, finishing about 394 AD.
In modern times, the 'Wenlock Games', officially called the Wenlock Olympian Society Annual Games, dates from 1850, and was a forerunner of the modern Olympic Games which did not start until almost 50 years later. The 'Wenlock Games are still held annually in the Shropshire village of Much Wenlock, England. In honor of this, one of the Olympic mascots for the London 2012 Summer Olympics is named Wenlock.
In 1894, a French educator Baron Pierre de Coubertin, proposed a revival of the ancient tradition, and thus the modern-day Olympic Summer Games were born.
Alfred Hajos of Hungary, who won the first Olympic Games Swimming Gold medal
(credit: public domain)
The Games Begin
The first Olympic Games of the modern era were held in Athens in 1896.
Women first competed at the 1900 Paris Games (more about Women at the Olympics)
Because of World War I and World War II, there were no Olympic Games in 1916, 1940, or 1944.
- You can read information about the history of each host country.
- About the ancient Olympic Games
- Alternative Olympics
- Athlete deaths at the Olympic Games
- Olympic Stadiums of the Modern Games.
- Royalty participating at the Games
- Books about the History of the Olympic Games
- History of Sport
- A description of each of the Olympic Games Posters
- Olympic Mascots