The Naked Olympics: The True Story of the Ancient Games

The Naked Olympics: The True Story of the Ancient Games

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Overview

The Naked Olympics: The True Story of the Ancient Games by Tony Perrottet, Lesley Thelander, Lesley Thelander

What was it like to attend the ancient Olympic Games?

With the summer Olympics’ return to Athens, Tony Perrottet delves into the ancient world and lets the Greek Games begin again. The acclaimed author of Pagan Holiday brings attitude, erudition, and humor to the fascinating story of the original Olympic festival, tracking the event day by day to re-create the experience in all its compelling spectacle.

Using firsthand reports and little-known sources—including an actual Handbook for a Sports Coach used by the Greeks—The Naked Olympics creates a vivid picture of an extravaganza performed before as many as forty thousand people, featuring contests as timeless as the javelin throw and as exotic as the chariot race.

Peeling away the layers of myth, Perrottet lays bare the ancient sporting experience—including the round-the-clock bacchanal inside the tents of the Olympic Village, the all-male nude workouts under the statue of Eros, and history’s first corruption scandals involving athletes. Featuring sometimes scandalous cameos by sports enthusiasts Plato, Socrates, and Herodotus, The Naked Olympics offers essential insight into today’s Games and an unforgettable guide to the world’s first and most influential athletic festival.

"Just in time for the modern Olympic games to return to Greece this summer for the first time in more than a century, Tony Perrottet offers up a diverting primer on the Olympics of the ancient kind….Well researched; his sources are as solid as sources come. It's also well writen….Perhaps no book of the season will show us so briefly and entertainingly just how complete is our inheritance from the Greeks, vulgarity and all."
--The Washington Post

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780812969917
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/08/2004
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 567,213
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Tony Perrottet is the author of Off the Deep End, Pagan Holiday, The Naked Olympics, and Napoleon's Privates. He lives in New York City.

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The Naked Olympics: The True Story of the Ancient Games 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is recommended if you're interested in how the Olympic games began. It offers lots of details of how people and atheletes reacted to during the run of the games. It also gives a timeline of the games and a detailed timeline of how the games were performed in 5 days. In addition of good info, the illustrations are cool. I like it very much. Its easy to read, informative, and funny. Recommended.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a fascinating introduction to ancient Greek culture, not just sports (the first Olympics included much more than just athletics, so there is a wealth of information on religion, sex, boozing, sightseeing, art, literature -- and great cameos by sports fans like Plato, Sophocles, Herodotus...!) It really brought the whole event to life for me in a way that I hadn't expected -- and the illustrations are excellent, drawn from original vase paintings, to show the long jump, wrestling and something called the pankration, which was an all-in brawl where strangling was encouraged as a way of achieveing victory. A hugely entertaining read -- for anyone interested in the past.
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