It is perhaps like comparing the food eaten in an upmarket West End restaurant in with that eaten at a Liverpool football match in The blood samples were taken from a forearm vein amidst periods of moderate to intense training but at least 6 h after a training session. The work was funded by the German government, with Wilhelm I, first Kaiser of the newly unified country, having heard Curtius lecture on Olympia way back in Virtually all our statues have lost their paint. We have to trawl through the small print for the occasional anthropological nugget, such as the fact that you could tell from the smell of his fart what the man in front had for dinner last night grilled sprats when serving as a rower in an Athenian trireme.
Outside was a mountainous heap of solidified ash: Where archaeology is our primary source, we are dependent on the vagaries and accidents of material-culture survival. We know a lot, for example, about what the ancient Athenians ate and drank, about their meal-times, and table manners; whereas we know very little about these matters at the Olympics. Virtually all our statues have lost their paint. Blood hemoglobin concentration, hematocrit, red cell count, white cell count WBC , and plasma ferritin concentration were measured on occasions from nationally ranked athletes in 12 sports. A multiple regression model, accounting for correlations between variables and incorporating the categorical variables of sex and sport revealed the following. In the Olympic Stadium, there were no stands and no shade: Equally problematic is the assumption that dishes described by the 4th century BC Sicilian gourmand Archestratos of Gela can be taken as evidence for what might have been eaten at the beginning of the century at Olympia. It is perhaps like comparing the food eaten in an upmarket West End restaurant in with that eaten at a Liverpool football match in I also needed to indulge a somewhat disreputable willingness to plunder the comparative evidence — using what we know generally about ancient Greece to reconstruct what might have happened specifically at the Olympics, and using what we know about the Olympics in one period to reconstruct what might have been going on at another. The air was alive with millions of flies, mosquitoes, and wasps. But there is no other way to attempt a rounded reconstruction of past experience. Half the Olympic programme was given over to religious ritual: The Olympic Village was a vast, tented encampment, with inadequate water-supplies, heaps of stinking refuse, and huge, open, improvised latrines. But large-scale excavation occurred only with the great campaign of Professor Ernst Curtius between and , when much of the ancient site was uncovered. This article is an extract from the full article published in World Archaeology Issue The Olympic site was not just a sports stadium; it was part-sanctuary, part-art gallery, and part-heritage trail. No-one got any sleep, as parties went on through the small hours, and hundreds of prostitutes, men and boys, were busy touting their services until dawn. Usually, we restrict our interpretive hypotheses to matters for which direct evidence is available. Click here to subscribe Share this: I set myself the task of writing a tourist guidebook — a sort of BC edition of the Rough Guide to the Olympics. By the end, no-one had washed properly for a week, and you could smell the Games a mile away. Olympia, forgotten during the Middle Ages, was rediscovered in by the English antiquarian Richard Chandler. The work was funded by the German government, with Wilhelm I, first Kaiser of the newly unified country, having heard Curtius lecture on Olympia way back in But this does not exhaust the realm of historical imagination. That we know a great deal about this palimpsest is down to the obsessive interest in the site shown by generations of Classical scholars. I wanted readers to imagine themselves as actually being there, and this seemed to be the most direct way to achieve that.
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