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The Olympic Tree

The Olympic Tree was a large wild olive tree standing atop a pedestal opposite the Temple of Zeus within the Sanctuary of Olympia in Elis, Greece.

The tree was also called Kallistefanos Elea (beautiful crown)[1] and the Olive Tree of Zeus[2],

History

The olive wreaths of the winners of the Olympic Games, kotinos, were made of the branches of the Olympic Tree. The branches were cut by children using a golden sickle and then taken to the Temple of Hera where the Hellanodikai, the judges of the games, made the wreaths.[3]

During the 428 BCE Olympics, the Spartan misthios Kassandra visited the Tree with her friend Barnabas.[3] Kassandra was also later crowned by Leander as the winner of that year's Olympics at the Tree.[4]

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References

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