Olympia: Exploring the Origins of the Olympics

Plan of the sanctuary of Olympia, Greece.

Olympia, is a small town in Elis on the Peloponnese peninsula in Greece, famous for the nearby archaeological site of the same name, which was a major Panhellenic religious sanctuary of ancient Greece, where the ancient Olympic Games were held every four years throughout Classical antiquity, from the 8th century BC to the 4th century AD.

They were restored on a global basis in 1894 in honor of the ideal of peaceful international contention for excellence.

The sacred precinct, named the Altis, was primarily dedicated to Zeus, although other gods were worshipped there.

The games conducted in his name drew visitors from all over the Greek world as one of a group of such “Panhellenic” centers, which helped to build the identity of the ancient Greeks as a nation.

Despite the name, it is nowhere near Mount Olympus in northern Greece, where the Twelve Olympians, the major deities of Ancient Greek religion, were believed to live.

source: Geographics Youtube Channel