Assassin’s Creed Discovery Tour: Gods of Olympia | Ep. 4 | Ubisoft [NA]

Welcome, friend, to this especially sacred part of the Olympian sanctuary! BARNABAS
My name is Barnabas, and I am a ship captain. Don’t be fooled by my scarred eye. Though I’ve seen my share of combat, I mostly
stick to trading these days. BARNABAS
Well, trading and introducing visitors like you to wonderful sites like this. BARNABAS
This place is practically vibrating with divine energy. BARNABAS
I feel like if I look over my shoulder right now, Zeus will be staring back at me! BARNABAS
The sanctuary of Olympia was dedicated to Zeus, king of the gods. BARNABAS
It had close connections to the divine, as you will see very soon. BARNABAS
I’ll come find you when you’re done, and we can talk about what you’ve learned. NARRATOR
This workshop was built for the renowned sculptor Phidias after his work on the Akropolis of
In 435 BCE, Phidias came to Olympia to begin working on the great chryselephantine statue
He died five years later, shortly after completing his masterpiece. NARRATOR
This grand statue would become one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. NARRATOR
Phidias’s workshop was located right next to the Temple of Zeus. NARRATOR
Its structure has been well preserved, mostly owing to its conversion to a church in the
5th century CE. NARRATOR
Archaeologists have also discovered lots of ancient materials in the surrounding area,
such as casting molds and sculpting tools. NARRATOR
The most famous artifact, however, is a cup bearing an inscription that aggressively states:
“I belong to Phidias!” NARRATOR
On the fifth and final day of the Olympic Games, victors attended a ceremony where they
were crowned with olive wreathes and showered in flowers. NARRATOR
The crowns came from the sacred olive tree of Zeus, which was planted near the god’s
temple. NARRATOR
A young boy trimmed the branches with a golden sickle before giving them to the hellanodikai
to turn into wreathes. NARRATOR
After the crowning ceremony, it was time for great feasting and celebration. NARRATOR
Pelops was both a legendary Greek hero, and the mythical
founder of the Olympic Games. NARRATOR
According to legend, Pelops fell in love with the beautiful Hippodameia. NARRATOR
Her father Oinomaos, the king of Pisa, disapproved of their union. NARRATOR
Having once heard a prophecy that he would be killed by his son-in-law, Oinomaos was
known to challenge his daughter’s suitors to chariot races, killing them when he won. NARRATOR
Still, Pelops was determined to win Hippodameia’s heart. NARRATOR
Before the race, he enlisted the help of Poseidon, who gave him a golden chariot with four winged
horses. NARRATOR
Pelops was able to win both the race and the hand of his beloved, while Oinomaos was dragged
to death by his horses. NARRATOR
The start of this famous race was depicted on the eastern pediment of the Temple of Zeus. NARRATOR
The Heraion was a temple dedicated to Hera. NARRATOR
It is one of the oldest temples in the sanctuary, dating back to approximately 590 BCE. NARRATOR
The structure included columns painted with images of women who won the Heraia, an athletic
competition made up of running events. NARRATOR
Every four years, sixteen women were chosen to make a veil dedicated to Hera. NARRATOR
These women also organized the competition, though they did not compete in it. NARRATOR
The Heraia was unique for its focus on female athletes, in contrast to the male-exclusive
Olympic Games. NARRATOR
Hera was the goddess of women, marriage, family, and childbirth. NARRATOR
She ruled Mount Olympos as queen of the gods, along with her husband and brother, Zeus. NARRATOR
Many mythological stories paint her as being annoyed at Zeus’s many lovers and illegitimate
offspring. NARRATOR
In Greek art, Hera is usually depicted as matronly and regal, often wearing a crown
or sitting on a throne. NARRATOR
She is also sometimes seen holding a pomegranate – a symbol of both fertility and death. NARRATOR
Hera’s cult was very popular across Greece, and Olympia even minted her image on its coinage. NARRATOR
One of the highlights of the Olympic Games was a ceremony that took place on the third
day of the festival. NARRATOR
It began with a procession of athletes, ambassadors, hellanodikai, and animals. NARRATOR
The group made their way around the Altis until they arrived at the Temple of Zeus. NARRATOR
Then, the animals were brought in front of the Altar of Zeus and offered as a sacrifice. NARRATOR
This sacrifice was known as a hekatomb, a word that originally described the sacrifice
of 100 oxen. NARRATOR
During the hekatomb, the bones and legs of the animals were burned and carried to the
top of a mound of ashes from previous sacrifices. NARRATOR
Meanwhile, the meat of the animals was saved for a large banquet held later in the evening. NARRATOR
The Olympic Games were dedicated to Zeus, and all the ceremonies and events were hosted
in his honor. NARRATOR
It’s no surprise that the largest temple in the sanctuary was the Temple of Zeus. NARRATOR
While most temples were restricted to priests, the Temple of Zeus welcomed all who visited
This openness was most likely meant to show off the gold and ivory statue of Zeus that
stood within the temple’s walls. NARRATOR
The building also featured art depicting both versions of the Olympic festival’s founding
The eastern pediment showed a scene from the legendary race between Pelops and Oinomaos. NARRATOR
The temple’s metopes, meanwhile, showed the twelve labors of Herakles, the other mythical
founder of the games. NARRATOR
Zeus was the god of sky and thunder, and king of the Olympians. He ruled the world from his home on Mount
The child of Kronos the Titan, Zeus overthrew his father and cast the Titans out in a great
battle known as the Titanomachy. NARRATOR
He had children of his own with his wife Hera, including Ares, Hephaistos, Hebe, and Eileithyia. NARRATOR
He also had many children without Hera, much to her consternation, but there are too many
to list here. NARRATOR
Zeus was believed to have control over the lives of mortals, as his many epithets attest
For example, his title “Horkios” made him a keeper of oaths, while “Xenios” was the
name conferred to him as a protector of hospitality. NARRATOR
In Greek art, Zeus was usually depicted holding a thunderbolt and sitting on a throne, befitting
his position as king. NARRATOR
The Temple of Zeus was home to the chryselephantine statue of Zeus, one of the seven wonders of
the ancient world. NARRATOR
The statue – made of gold, ivory, and wood – was sculpted by the renowned artist Phidias. NARRATOR
At thirteen meters tall, it was as impressive looking as it was difficult to maintain. NARRATOR
Oil was used to protect the wood and ivory from cracking, and to prevent general decay. NARRATOR
While the statue does not exist today, it was thankfully described by Pausanias in great
detail, so its legacy lives on. BARNABAS
Hello again! I hoped you enjoyed your visit, and feel a
little bit closer to the gods. BARNABAS
Well, as close as a mortal can get. BARNABAS
Is there anything else you’d like to do? BARNABAS
Excellent! Let’s see what you remember. Your first question is a simple one. BARNABAS
Which goddess was Zeus’s wife? BARNABAS
Athena was the goddess of wisdom. She was Zeus’s daughter, not his wife. Try again. BARNABAS
Artemis was the goddess of many things, such as hunting, wilderness, and chastity. BARNABAS
However, she was Zeus’s daughter. Try a different answer. BARNABAS
Depending on the story, Aphrodite was either Zeus’s daughter, or the product of some…
questionable sea foam. BARNABAS
Either way, she was not Zeus’s wife. BARNABAS
Correct! Not only was Hera Zeus’s wife, she was his
sister as well. But let’s move on to the next question. BARNABAS
What kind of contest did Pelops win in his quest to marry Hippodameia? BARNABAS
Javelin throwing was part of the the Olympic Games, but it was not the event Pelops participated
in. Try again. BARNABAS
What kind of contest did Pelops win in his quest to marry Hippodameia? BARNABAS
Foot races were a part of both the Olympic Games, and the all-female event known as the
However, Pelops did not run for Hippodameia’s love. Try another answer. BARNABAS
Wrestling was a major event in the Olympic Games, but it isn’t part of the legend of
Pelops. Keep trying. BARNABAS
Yes! Pelops won a chariot race, thanks to Poseidon’s
And now, the final question. BARNABAS
What was inscribed on the cup found near Phidias’s workshop? BARNABAS
I don’t think Phidias had any children, but even if he did, let it be known that I’m the
world’s best dad! BARNABAS
Try a different answer. BARNABAS
Phidias was a great sculptor, but I don’t think he was arrogant enough to advertise
the fact on the cup. Try again. BARNABAS
No. That would be a little too on the nose. Try another answer. BARNABAS
Correct! Apparently, Phidias was very possessive of
his things. Perhaps someone from the sanctuary kept stealing
But I’m getting off track. BARNABAS
Excellent work, friend! You honor the Gods with your great wisdom. BARNABAS
Farewell for now, my friend!

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