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Athens
1896

DateApril 6 - April 15
CountryGreece
Athletes241
Teams14
Events43
Athens 1896
Local hero Spyridon Louis earns cult status in marathon
Athens 1896
Top reasons why the Athens 1896 Olympics were important for modern sport
The sabre – the only weapon to have been at every Games since 1896
The Beginning of an Era - The Athens 1896 Olympic Games
Highlights01:05
The Beginning of an Era - The Athens 1896 Olympic Games

About the Games

Games Reborn

The first celebration of the modern Olympic Games took place in its ancient birthplace - Greece. The Games attracted athletes from 14 nations, with the largest delegations coming from Greece, Germany, France and Great Britain.

Marathon Joy

Due to its historical significance, the Greek hosts wanted to win the marathon above all else. Spyridon Louis set off from the city of Marathon and took the lead four kilometres from the finish line and, to the joy of the 100,000 spectators, won the race by more than seven minutes.

Will to Live

Hungarian swimmer Alfréd Hajós won the 100m and the 1200m events. For the longer race, the swimmers were transported by boat out to sea and left to swim the required distance back to shore. Hajós later confessed that his “will to live completely overcame [his] desire to win”.

First Modern Champion

On 6 April 1896, the American James Connolly won the triple jump to become the first Olympic champion in more than 1,500 years. He also finished second in the high jump and third in the long jump.

All Medals

Medal Table

See the list of teams and medals won by each.

See table
Athens
1896

Featured Athletes

All AthletesVisit
Gold
Silver
Bronze
United States of America
United States of America
Germany
Germany
3
2
1
Athens
1896

Discover the Games

The Brand

A visual identity is developed for each edition of the Olympic Games.

Brand

Brand

The Medals

Beginning as an olive wreath, medal designs have evolved over the years.

Medals

Medals