The Ancient Olympics

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Unbearable heat, an unhygienic environment, and questionable food were some of the things spectators were forced to face in order to watch the ancient Olympic Games. More agonizing was the lack of an adequate water supply, causing many to collapse due to dehydration. There was no proper place to sleep, or to take a shower. Diarrhea and fever spread amongst them. Yet these discomforts seemed to be a small price to pay in order to watch the Games. It wasn’t just a game to the Greeks. The ancient Olympics were part of a religious festival, with many opportunities that attracted the Greeks, and made them feel like they had to go. The ancient Olympic games were “the ultimate pagan entertainment package” ( Perrottet 11). It was a combination of …show more content…

The place was like a fair or a marketplace. Entertainers traveled to set up booths including dancers, storytellers, and acrobats. The Olympics was a place everyone took advantage of for cash and self-promotion. The highlight of the activities and events available were the actual games. It started on day two with the four-horse chariot race. This was the most anticipated of all the sporting events. The event was followed by a Pentathlon. The evening of day three consisted of the boy’s events which included wrestling, boxing and running. Day four was comprised of running races that varied between 200,400 and 3,600 meters. It was followed by contact sports (wrestling, boxing, and pankration) and an armor race. It all ended on day five with closing ceremonies. The Greeks felt a need to go to the Olympics not only because of the excellent events and opportunities, but also because of its religious significance. The Olympics were “as spiritually profound for pagans as a pilgrimage to Varanasi for Hindus or the Muslim hajj” ( Perrottet 11). Religious rituals took up more time than the sports. There was sacred sightseeing to do and temples to

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