Flame is lit for Paris 2024 in choreographed event in the birthplace of the ancient Olympics

The flame for the 2024 Paris Olympics has been lit in Olympia, the birthplace of the ancient Olympics. The flame will now begin its journey in a relay to light the cauldron that will mark the opening for the Summer Games in July.

Dignitaries and members of the public gathered in the stadium, where the earliest recorded Games were held in 776 BC, to witness the lighting of the flame.

In a choreographed event high in symbolism inspired by the traditions and values of ancient Greece, actresses dressed as ancient priestesses entered the stadium to gracefully accompany the head priestess to the Temple of Hera, where religious ceremonies are thought to have taken place in ancient Greece and where the lighting ceremony is held.

Asking for the help of the god of light, Apollo, the head priestess lit the flame with the help of the rays of the sun, holding a fuel-filled torch to a parabolic mirror.

Greek actress Mary Mina, playing the role of High Priestess, carries the torch during the Olympic Flame lighting ceremony for the Paris 2024 Olympics

The first such choreographed ritual was first established for the 1936 Berlin Games with the costumes and torch designs capturing the minds of creatives.

In Ancient Olympia, home of the ancient Olympics for more than 1,000 years, a flame was thought to burn perpetually on a shrine, symbolizing the eternal spirit of the Games: the enduring pursuit of excellence and human unity.

Over 10,000 torchbearers and thousands of miles

The first runner of the Olympic torch relay is Greek Olympic gold medalist rower Stefanos Ntouskos.

Speaking to CNN ahead of the ceremony, Ntouskos described being the first torchbearer as “a great honor.”

Source: GraphicOnline

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