Google celebrates 120th anniversary of first Summer Olympics
Google today celebrated the 120th anniversary of the Summer Olympics, which were first held in 1896 in Athens, Greece. Innovatively, Google portrayed four variations of 'Google Doodle', which could be seen by refreshing the page, to represent winners of four sporting events in the 1896 Olympics. The four doodles include champion athlete-Spyridon Louis, the weightlifting event, Louis Zutter on pommel horse, and Robert Garrett.
What is Summer Olympics?
The Summer Olympic Games is an international multi-sport event, which is conducted once in every four years. Summer Olympic Games, popularly known as Olympics, is conducted in every leap year since 1896 by the International Olympic Committee. Since 1904, medals were awarded for the first three places in each Olympic sport, gold for the first, silver for the second and bronze for the third.
Olympics promote international peace and understanding
The International Olympic Committee (IOC), which organizes the Olympic Games, was established by Pierre de Coubertin as an international, non-governmental, non-profit organization. The IOC was founded to promote international peace and understanding through organizing Olympic sporting competitions. The idea of the modern Olympics was based on the annual Wenlock Olympian Games, which were first conducted in 1850 in Shropshire, England.
What do the Olympic rings represent?
The five Olympic rings in blue, black, yellow, red and green colors represent the continents - North and South America as one, Africa, Europe, Asia, and Australia, which participate in the Olympics.
The first summer Olympic Games
The first Summer Olympics were inaugurated by King George I of Greece and organized from 5-16 April 1896 at Athens in Greece. In the 1896 Summer Olympics, a total of 241 participants from 14 countries had taken part. A total of 43 events in nine sports including athletics, cycling, fencing, gymnastics, sailing, shooting, swimming, tennis, weightlifting and wrestling were conducted.
Three Summer Olympics cancelled due to war
The 1916 Berlin Summer Olympics were cancelled due to the World War I. Similarly, the 1940 and 1944 Summer Olympics scheduled to be held in Japan and London respectively were cancelled due to the World War II.
The 2012 Summer Olympic Games
The 2012 Summer Olympics, governed by the International Olympic Committee, were inaugurated by Queen Elizabeth II and conducted from 25 July-12 August 2012 at London, UK. In 2012, over 10,000 athletes from 205 nations had participated in 302 events in 26 sports. The United States had won 104 medals, highest medals won in that year, with 46 golds, 29 silvers, and 29 bronzes.
Eighteen countries hosted Olympics
So far, eighteen countries have hosted the Summer Olympics. The United States (1904, 1932, 1984 and 1996) is the nation to host the event for the maximum number of times, which is followed by Great Britain (1908, 1948 and 2012).
The next edition of Summer Olympics
The 2016 Summer Olympic Games were announced to be held at Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, which would be conducted from 5-21 August 2016. Over 10,500 athletes from 206 countries are expected to take part in the 2016 Rio Olympics; Kosovo and South Sudan would make their Olympic debut. A total of 306 medal events in 28 sports would be held in 2016.