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Gold Wreath of Olives and Olive Leaves
Date: 4th – 3rd century BC
Photographed at the M. C. Carlos Museum, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Athletes at games would receive a perishable wreath of leaves. At the Olympic games, a victor would receive a wreath of wild olives. At the Pythian games the victor received a laurel wreath, at the Nemean games it was wild celery, and at the Isthmian games, celery or pine.
A number of gold wreaths, resembling the olive wreaths of athletes have been found in wealthy tombs in Greece.
Nike with Victory Wreath
Photographed at the Altes Museum, Berlin, Germany.
The apostle Paul wrote:
“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.” 1 Corinthians 9:24 – 25.
Gravestone of an Athlete
Date: 2nd century BC
Photographed at the Istanbul Archaeology Museum, Istanbul, Turkey.
This is the gravestone of Hekatodoros’ son. It shows that the deceased won a torch relay and races in honour of the moon.