The Panhellenic Games were four prestigious athletic festivals held in different parts of Greece, dedicated to the Gods from Greek Mythology. Here's everything you need to know.
Stadiums of Ancient Greece
Many ancient sites in Greece have a stadium area, with the most well known being in Ancient Olympia. These stadiums give an indication not only into how well developed the ancient Greek city states were, but also the culture and customs of the time.
Whilst we know about the major athletic events held at these venues, little is known regarding if the stadiums were also used at other times during the year.
We do know the stadiums were often part of a larger complex which may have had sanctuary status, and would be cared for by a nearby city state.
Olympia - credits: znm666/depositphotos
The Panhellenic Games
In the past, there were four important centres complete with stadiums, and these formed the core of what we refer to today as the Panhellenic Games. These stadiums were found at Ancient Olympia, Delphi, Nemea, and Isthmia.
Each of these locations held an athletic and cultural games based on their own calendars, and dedicated to a particular Greek God. Competitors from all over the ancient Greek world would travel to these locations and compete against one another, winning not only prestige for themselves but also for their families and city.
As many of the Greek city states seemed to be in a state of war with each other, truces were called at the time of the Games to ensure the safe passage of athletes.
Of the four Games, the Games at Olympia were considered to be the most important. For many athletes, particularly those travelling from Northern Greece, it must have been quite a journey to get there!