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Ancient Olympics Guide
April 2004-August 2008

With the lighting of the torch at Olympia on March 24, the final countdown to the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing began. While the torch is carried around the world, the finishing touches are put on the competition venues in and around Beijing, and the games begin, why not catch up on the ancient Olympics with


Lighting of the 2008 torch in Olympia (© Getty)

Our Ancient Olympics Guide includes comprehensive coverage by leading scholars...

Winning at Olympia
New studies challenge traditional notions about ancient Greek athletes and why they competed.
by Donald G. Kyle

Games for Girls
Women were prohibited from attending the Olympics, but girls participated in other athletic competitions.
by Thomas F. Scanlon

Stadia and Starting Gates
Footraces were a mainstay of the games, but how did the Greeks start their races?
by Hugh M. Lee

Myths about the Olympic Games
Many Olympic traditions, including the torch relay, are modern inventions.
by David C. Young

We link you to the ancient and modern games at Nemea, too...

Reviving Nemea's Games
Take off your shoes, put on a tunic, and join the games at Nemea!
by Mark Rose

Tell you about the Romans' ancient games: the Isolympics...

The Augustan Games of Naples
A look at one of the ancient world's most prestigious competitions, held in honor of one of the ancient world's biggest sports fans
by Malin Banyasz and Mark Rose

Explore cultural heritage in Beijing...

Beijing Looks Back
Old and new compete for the city's soul as dust settles from Olympic construction.
text by Eti Bonn-Muller and photographs by Liu Bowen

Perspectives from Beijing
Talking to experts on cultural heritage in the host city of the games
Interviews by Eti Bonn-Muller

Beijing Street Scenes
A tour of the Olympics host city
Photo Essay by Eti Bonn-Muller

And show you where to find out more...

Olympic Resources on the Web & in the Library

See also...

Does Greece Need the Olympics?
Yes--and a tour of Athens will show you why.

For more Olympic coverage, see the AIA's website.

© 2004-2008 by the Archaeological Institute of America