The Olympic Symbols
Flag and Rings
Baron Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the Modern Olympics, designed the flag around 1913. The borderless flag displays five interlocking rings in the center on a plain white background. Each ring is a different color of blue, black, red, yellow, and green. It is thought these colors were chosen because at least one color can be found in the flag of every nation on the planet. A different ring represents the continents of Africa, the Americas, Asia, Australia, and Europe. The Olympic Flag was first used at the 1920 Games in Antwerp, Belgium. After the games are completed, the mayor of the host city presents the mayor of the future host city the symbolic flag. The item then remains at the town hall of the future host city for four years until the Opening Ceremony of the next Olympic Games.
At the beginning of each Olympics, every athlete promises to play fairly and obey all of the Olympic rules. One athlete from the host country takes the oath at the Opening Ceremonies on behalf of all the athletes. The athlete that is chosen holds a corner of the Olympic Flag while repeating the oath. The oath is as follows:
"In the name of all competitors, I promise that we shall take part in these Olympic Games, respecting and abiding by the rules that govern them, in the true spirit of sportsmanship, for the glory of sport and the honor of our teams."
Baron Pierre de Coubertin wrote the oath. It became part of our Modern Olympic Games in 1920. The Olympic officials also have to take an oath. Like the athletes, one official is chosen to hold a corner of the Olympic Flag and repeats a similar oath on behalf of all the officials.
The Olympic Flame
lighting of the Olympic Flame comes from the ancient Greeks.
During the Ancient Olympic Games the
sun’s rays were used to light the sacred flame at Olympia.
It stayed lit until the games were over.
The flame represented the “endeavor for protection and struggle for
flame was first introduced into our Modern Olympics at the 1928
Games held in Amsterdam, the
Netherlands. Since then, the
flame symbolizes “the light of spirit, knowledge, and life.”
Torch Relay also started in the Olympics. It
was revived in 1936
in the Berlin Games. Originally,
the torch was lit at Olympia, Greece and then was carried by relay to the host
city of the games. During the
Opening Ceremony the last runner carries the torch into the Olympic Stadium.
The flame is then lit from the torch and stays lit until it is
extinguished in the Closing Ceremony. The
Torch Relay symbolizes Olympic traditions being passed from one generation to
The Olympic Creed, otherwise
known as the Olympic Message, has appeared on the scoreboard of every modern
Olympic Games during the Opening Ceremony.
It states the following:
“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win
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