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Olympics Games

Torino 2006

A tradition that dates back to Ancient Greece, the Olympic Games are a symbol of international unity, representing far more than a series of sporting events. The philosophy and ethics of the Olympic Spirit: peace among different nations, fair play in sports, and the unselfish sharing of joys and emotions, are as necessary now in these hard political times as they were at their inception.

The earliest record of the games comes from Olympia, in ancient Greece, in 776 B.C. The tradition would continue for a thousand years, happening once every four years, until coming to an end.
In 1894, the ancient games were revived, continuing the four-year cycle in different cities across the world. More recently, the Winter and Summer games were split to fall within two years of one another.

This year sees the return of the Winter Olympics to Italy, in the northern city of Torino. The decision has much to do with Torino's unique geography, located next to a lengthy stretch of the Alps. Torino has even been called the real "capital" of the Alps and is an extraordinary location for winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding.

The Olympic Flame is the very symbol of the Olympics, with an origin in Greek mythology. The story goes that Prometheus stole the sacred Fire from the Gods and brought it back to Earth, where it became a symbol of human reason, freedom and creativity.

This year, the Olympic Torch was lit in Rome on December 8, 2005 and is now traveling around the whole of Italy: Christmas in Sicily, New Year's Day in Naples and Torino on February 9, 2006, arriving for the Opening Ceremonies.

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