Olympia. The Stadium: Scene of the handing over and carrying of the torch. The birth of the Olympic Games is lost in the mists of time but conventionally the first Olympiad is calculated to have commenced in 776 BC. The Olympic Games continued until 390 AD., during which interval some 293 Olympiads. The first modern Olympic Games were organized in Athens in 1896 by the Greek state, on the initiative of Baron O. de Coubertin, and have since been held every four years in a different city throughout the world. At the start of each, Olympiad flames is held in the scared grove of Altis Olympia whence it is carried in relays to the stadium where the games will take place, symbolizing the survival of the ancient spirit of competition.