The Modern Olympic Games were founded in 1894, when French educationist Pierre de Coubertin sought to promote international understanding through sporting competition.

Modern Olympics

The Modern Olympic Games were founded in the year 1894 by Baron Pierre de Coubertin, who was a French educationist and sought to promote international harmony and understanding through sporting competition. The great French man strongly believed in the Olympic ideal that even enemies could be united in sporting competition. The first Modern Olympics were finally held in 1896 and attracted athletes from fourteen nations of the world. At the first Modern Olympic Games in 1896 that were held in the place of birth of the philosophy of Olympism, Greece, the largest delegates came from the Greece, Germany, France and Great Britain.

The interest in reviving the ancient Olympic Games as an international event grew in the mid-nineteenth century. It was during this time that the ruins of ancient Olympia were excavated by German Archaeologists. Coubertin in 1890 founded the Union des Sociétés Francaises de Sports Athlétiques (USFSA), a French sports organization. Two years later in a historic meeting of Union des Sociétés Francaises de Sports Athlétiques on November 25, 1892 in Paris, Coubertin suggested the revival of the Olympic Games. Head strong about reviving the games, he arranged for a conference with 79 delegates representing nine countries in 1894. The delegates unanimously voted for hosting the first Modern summer Olympic Games in 1896.

Held in Athens in 1896, the first Modern Olympic Games were the biggest international sports event staged in the times. The international multi-sporting event hence began from the place of birth of the Olympics and came to be sub-divided as Summer and Winter Olympic Games. The first Summer Olympics as we know it were organized in 1896 but the Winter Olympics began from the year 1924 and were held in Chamonix, France. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is the organization that organizes the Olympic Games. The International Olympic Committee was created by Pierre de Coubertin and Demetrios Vikelas on June 23, 1894. The Games are the exclusive property of the IOC, which has the last word on any issue related to the Games. The modern Olympic Games are organized through a partnership between the IOC and the Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (OCOG). Women also found an entry into the Modern Olympic Games, though not in the first games but in 1900. Since then, women have been regularly showing their sporting prowess in the Games.

Coubertin and the IOC believed in the noble thought that the Games should be a means to promote harmony between the nations of the world. Keeping this in mind, they decided to host the games in different nations across the globe. As a consequence, the second modern Olympic Games were held in Paris, France in 1900. The modern Olympic Games, which started with merely fourteen nations participating in the sporting event now has over 200 nations across the globe as participants of the modern Olympic Games. 203 countries will be sending their athletes to participate in the Beijing Olympic 2008. The modern Olympic Games too have had gone through difficult times. The Games were begun to encourage international peace and harmony, however in 1980, the United States of America did not participate in the Moscow Olympic Games. USSR followed suit, when the Olympic Games were held in Los Angeles, USA. In a shocking incident in Munich in 1972, 11 athletes were killed by terrorists. Later in 1996 a bomb attack during the games killed two people in Atlanta. The Olympic Games despite the trying times have been a great link between nations and people of different faiths, culture and backgrounds.