|Where did the marathon come from?
[ 2006-03-14 18:38 ]
marathon was never one of the ancient Olympic events, although its origin
dates back to another episode in ancient Greek history.
The traditional origin of the marathon comes from the story how a
herald named Phidippides ran the 26 miles from Marathon to Athens to
announce the Greek victory and died on the spot.
In the 5th century B.C., the Persians invaded
Greece, landing at Marathon, a small town about 26 miles from the city of
Athens. Phidippides was sent by the Athenians to Sparta to ask for help; a
man named Eukles announced the victory to the Athenians and then
Later sources confused the story of Phidippides with that of Eukles.
Although most ancient authors do not support this legend, the story has
persisted and is the basis for the modern-day marathon.
The modern Olympic marathon is approximately 26 miles and usually takes
over 2 hours for athletes to finish.