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50 Things You Never Knew About The Olympics

•, Jennifer Smith
 Thought you knew everything about the Olympics? Think again. Here's our pick of the 50 most interesting facts about the world's biggest sporting event.

1. Shakespeare was the first person to use the word “Olympian” in 1591, in Henry VI, with the line: "Promise them such rewards / As victors wear at the Olympian games."

2. The ancient Olympics were first referred to in Homer’s Iliad, written in the 7th or 8th century BC.

3. The earliest record of the Games dates from 776 BC, when the only event was a foot race ….

4. ... and women, slaves and “impious” persons were banned from taking part in or watching the Games.

5. The “Olympic Truce” required that wars and disputes with the Hellenic world be suspended for the duration of the Games.

6. The first post-classical “Olimpick” games took place near Chipping Campden in 1612, exactly 400 years before London 2012.

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