The Ancient Olympics: Bridging past and present
The Ancient Olympics: Bridging past and present

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The Ancient Olympics: Bridging past and present Includes explicit content

11. Quiz

Question 1

What did Theodosius I do?

a. 

A. Started the first truce of the Ancient Olympics


b. 

B. Banned the Olympics


c. 

C. Won four pentathlons in a row


d. 

D. Occupied Olympia’s sacred grove while the Games were in full swing


The correct answer is b.

Answer

Theodosius I was a Roman emperor who adopted Christianity as the official religion of the empire. Between 389 and 391 CE, he banned all forms of non-Christian religion, including the Panhellenic Games of Greece, which, at that time, was part of the Roman empire.

Question 2

A wrestling (pale) match was won by...

a. 

A. throwing an opponent on his hip


b. 

B. throwing an opponent on his back


c. 

C. forcing an opponent to admit defeat by raising his arm with the index finger pointing up


d. 

D. All of the above


The correct answer is d.

Answer

A pale match could be won either by throwing an opponent on his hip, shoulder or back, or forcing him to admit defeat.

Question 3

The Classical Greek term gymnos (where the word ‘gymnasion’ derives from), means:

a. 

A. Agony


b. 

B. Strength


c. 

C. Naked


d. 

D. Male


The correct answer is c.

Answer

The gymnasion derives its name from the Greek word for ‘naked’, because athletes trained and competed with their clothes off.

Question 4

What did the Ancient Greeks call the Olympic marathon race?

a. 

A. stadion


b. 

B. dolichos


c. 

C. hoplitodromos


d. 

D. None of the above


The correct answer is d.

Answer

The Ancient Olympics did not have a marathon race. Marathon racing was introduced as an Olympic event in 1896 by Michel Bréal and Pierre de Coubertin.

Question 5

Link the sporting equipment with their appropriate sporting events in the right column by dragging and dropping the phrases.

Using the following two lists, match each numbered item with the correct letter.

  1. himantes

  2. hisplex

  3. tethrippon

  4. halteres

  5. ankyle

  • a.javelin throw

  • b.long jump

  • c.boxing

  • d.chariot race

  • e.foot race

The correct answers are:
  • 1 = c
  • 2 = e
  • 3 = d
  • 4 = b
  • 5 = a

Answer

Himantes were long oxhide straps that were wrapped around the boxer’s wrists and hands.

The hysplex was a starting mechanism that resembled a long wooden fence. Its aim was to reduce the number of false starts in foot races.

The tethrippon was a small, light chariot drawn by four horses. It was fast and very dangerous to drive.

Halteres were weights made of stone or metal, used in the long jump. They were also used during an athlete’s training as an ancient equivalent of dumbbells.

The ankyle was a strap wrapped around the javelin and held between two of the athlete’s fingers in a loop. It was used to increase the javelin’s speed and accuracy.

Question 6

The Ancient Olympics were held in honour of:

a. 

A. The governor of Elis


b. 

B. Spartan war heroes


c. 

C. Pallas Athena, the patron of Athens


d. 

D. Zeus


The correct answer is d.

Answer

The Ancient Olympics had deep religious significance and were held in honour of the god Zeus. There was a large temple and altar dedicated to Zeus in the sacred grove at Olympia.

Question 7

An Olympiad was:

a. 

A. The four-year cycle between each Olympic festival


b. 

B. The organiser of the Olympic festival


c. 

C. Any athlete who participated in the Olympics


d. 

D. None of the above


The correct answer is a.

Answer

The Olympics became such an important cultural referent in Ancient Greece that long periods of time were often measured in Olympiads.

Question 8

Link the Ancient Olympic values in the blue boxes with their correct modern equivalents.

Using the following two lists, match each numbered item with the correct letter.

  1. arete

  2. isonomia

  3. kalokagathia

  4. kleos

  • a.equality

  • b.glory

  • c.excellence

  • d.balance and harmony of body and mind

The correct answers are:
  • 1 = c
  • 2 = a
  • 3 = d
  • 4 = b

Answer

Arete is the excellence that an Ancient Greek athlete was expected to strive for in his training and competitions. Arete was associated with notions of courage, strength and virtue.

Isonomia is the sense of fairness and equality that, in principle, all Ancient Olympic athletes had a right to.

The word kalokagathia is a combination of the Greek terms ‘beautiful’ and ‘good’, which referred to the qualities that an individual should aspire to as part of a balanced, successful education.

Kleos was the word used to describe the honour and fame that an athlete obtained with his victory. It was also used to refer to the glory associated with epic heroes in classical mythology and honourable citizens.

Question 9

The precedents of the Olympic festival can be found in Mycenaean and Minoan...

a. 

A. Dionysiac celebrations


b. 

B. ball games


c. 

C. funerary rituals


d. 

D. dancing contests


The correct answer is c.

Answer

The Olympics probably developed as a funerary tradition. According to the Iliad (XXIII) [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] , the mythological character Achilles was the first person to hold athletic games in honour of a deceased person (his friend Patroclus).

Question 10

Which of the following places was not a site of a Panhellenic game?

a. 

A. Corinth


b. 

B. Athens


c. 

C. Delphi


d. 

D. Olympia


The correct answer is b.

Answer

Athens hosted the Panathenaic Games, which were considered a local festival rather than a Panhellenic (i.e. all-Greek) game.

Olympics_1

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