Believe it or not… the ancient Olympics Games began in 776BC

Yes believe it or not this is true. In 776 B.C. about 3000 years ago in Greece, they started a religious festival to honour Zeus, the god of the sky & leader of the Greek gods, who lived on Mount Olympus – the highest mountain in Greece.

The modern Olympic Games were started in Athens, Greece in 1896 & 4 years later it moved to Paris, France. In both these events there were more athletes than competitors. These days, the Summer Olympics are the biggest sporting event on the planet & draw in spectators from around the world. In Rio, the attendance figures have been somewhat disappointing due to a number of factors. Political instability, health & security scares have all contributed to the numbers. Also the opening of the athletics events, on Friday 12th was marred by pouring rain & only a couple of thousand spectators arrived to fill the 60,000 capacity stadium.


London, England holds the record for hosting the Games 3 times – in 1908, 1948 & in 2012. The USA has hosted the Olympics 4 times, but in different cities.

The only mother & daughter to ever compete was in 1900 & they both played golf.

The first black competitor to compete in the modern Games was a gentleman called Constantin Henriquez de Zubiera , who represented France in 1900.

The oldest man to compete was Oscar Swahn of Sweden, who represented his country in shooting in 1908, 1912 & at the age of 72 years old competed for the last time in 1920. The oldest woman to participate was 70 year old Lorna Johnstone from Great Britain in 1972 as an equestrian. The youngest medallist in the Games was Inge Sorensen from Denmark, who was awarded a bronze medal in the 200 metre breaststroke in 1936.

The only woman athlete not to be submitted for a sex test was the equestrian Princess Anne from Great Britain – it was considered inappropriate.

In London 2012, Nur Suryani Mohd Taibi of Malaysia competed in shooting, when she was 34 weeks pregnant.

Look out for our next Profusion Magazine Rio 2016 trivia blog & follow us on Facebook for more interesting Games updates.

Written by Felicity Loopstra

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