Apr
21

Didn’t get a ticket for the Olympics in Brazil? Try the Nemea Games!

Thanasis Gavos   Thu, 21 Apr 2016; 14:42
Nemea Games,

It’s not too late to attend the Games!

Try a visit closer to home, to the birthplace of the Olympic movement, in Ancient Nemea, Greece.

The revived Nemean Games take place here on June 10 – 12, 2016

The Society for the Revival of the Nemean Games, is a voluntary organisation led by  American archaeologist Dr.Stephen Miller who uncovered the ancient stadium in 1973. Excavations around the site are still ongoing.

It was at Nemea that the ancient Greeks celebrated religious and athletic festivals that were part of the cycle of games that took place in Delphi, Isthmia, and Olympia. It was here at one of these four sites that wars and hostilities were briefly suspended by a sacred truce.

Thus the festivals of today are the direct descendants of the United Nations and Olympic movement, and the ancient stadium discovered at Nemea is, therefore, an important monument in the history of such institutions.

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Once every four years there is there is the chance of enjoying the light-hearted re-enactment of the games. No medals or records are kept. Races are organised by gender and age, and participants are rewarded only by the experience of bare feet running on the same stones and soil where ancient feet ran more than 2000 years ago.

In antiquity, the final item on the programme of the Olympic games was a victory banquet in the prytaneion (Town Hall) next to the eternal flame of the goddess Hestia.

The equivalent of this at the revived Nemean Games  is a banquet in the local school house courtyard.

Those who have run, and their friends and families, will be hosted by the Society and by the citizens of Ancient Nemea. The evening usually ends with dancing in the streets.

For more images and information on visiting the ancient sites of Greece, discovering  the Peloponnese  and how to attend or participate in the Nemean Games, please visit www.eternalgreece.com.

About Thanasis Gavos

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