(PCM) The Olympic torch is probably one of the most talked about aspect of the Olympic games. The torch is lit and carried throughout the hosting country by every day citizens to some of the country’s most renown celebrities. Carrying the torch and lighting the legendary Olympic cauldron is a huge honor, but where exactly did the traditions come from?
The lighting of the cauldron originates all the way back to Ancient Greek myth with the story of Prometheus, who stole fire from the gods. And seeing how Greece is the home of the original Olympic games, it’s nice to see the modern world pay homage.
The running with the torch, however, is a new technique started in the 1936 Olympic Games and has stuck with the Olympics ever since.
And the torch changes with each new Olympics, the style and design changing as each new country hosts the games. For example, the torch of the 2000 Games, located in Sydney, had a torch that was compatible under water for it’s trip under the Great Barrier Reef!
The 2012 Olympic Torch, for the current London games, had been designed with personal emblems to reflect the home country of England.
The running with the Olympic torch has met some controversy in the past. During the 1956 Melbourne Games, a fake torch made up of underwear and a food can was passed off as the real thing.
Luckily, the 2012 Games did not have a faker; instead, the torch was carried by some familiar faces, including Harry Potter’s Rupert Grint and Matt Smith–also known as Doctor Who!