Since 1896, the year the Olympics were resurrected from ancient history, the Olympics have been a symbol of the camaraderie and harmony possible on a global scale. The gathering of athletic representatives, the pride of the pack, from participating governments, even throughout the recent Cold War period, is proof that world unity is possible; just as it was in Ancient Greece with the polis or city-states. .
Olympic Games were held throughout Ancient Greece, but the most famous are the games that were held in Olympia in honor of Zeus every four years from August 6th to September 19th. The first record of these games is of one Coroebus of Elis, a cook, winning a sprint race in 776 BC. Most historians believe the games to have been going on for approximately 500 years before this. In the year Coroebus was made a part of history, there was apparently only one simple event, a race called the stade. The track was said to be one stade long or roughly 210 yards. .
The Pentathlon consisted of five events; the long jump, javelin throw, discus throw, foot race, and wrestling. The Pentathlons, especially the successful ones, were often treated and even worshipped like gods. Because of their exquisite physiques, they were used as the models for statues of the Greek Gods. The superior athletic ability of these athletes affects the games even today. The twisting and throwing method of the discus throw, which originated in Ancient Greece, is still used today. The original events were even more challenging than those of today. The modern discus weighs in at just 5 pounds, one-third of the original weight, and the long jumps were done with the contestant carrying a five pound weight in each hand. The pit to be traversed in this jump allowed for a 50 foot jump, compared to just over 29 feet in our modern Olympics. Apparently, the carried weights, used correctly, could create momentum to carry the athlete further.