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Paris 1900 - The first
of its kind


It came as the most natural of decisions when Pierre de Coubertin instigated to set the Modern Games of the II Olympiad, in Paris in 1900. For five months, from 14 May to 28 October, the events, official or demonstration sports, unfolded across Paris and in the Games’ stronghold: the Vincennes Velodrome and Stadium.
 
Vélodrome de Vincennes - Federal Gymnastics Meeting
Federal Gymnastics Meeting at Vélodrome de Vincennes.
(© CNRS Editions)
 
 
- The 1900 Paris Games,
facts & figures

- Paris 1924,
Innovation and Continuity

Held in Paris, the 1900 Olympic Games were truly groundbreaking: for the first and only time, these took place against the backdrop of another major event, the World’s Fair. The idea came from the IOC, who wanted to make this Olympiad one to be remembered.
 
Despite its outstanding sporting quality and commendable concept, the Games were unfortunately at times drowned out by the Fair’s hullabaloo.
 
These were novel Games for more than one reason. Set in a never-before-seen environment, they were also the first to welcome women as participants. Out of the nearly 1 000 competing athletes, 22 were women. Even the most disbelieving recognised they had undeniable sporting abilities.
 
Paris 1900 also offered the opportunity for many recreational
athletes to display their talents in specialities that were original, to say the least: balloon racing and line fishing were amongst the unusual demonstration sports, still attracted an intrigued audience.
 
Although there were neither opening nor closing ceremonies, dozens of official ceremonies were held throughout the Games. 
 
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