Paris 1924 Summer Olympic Games

[Translate to English:] Poletne olimpijske igre Pariz 1924

The Games were hosted by Paris for the second time after 1900. This time, Slovenians took part in the games and left their mark in the capital of France.


Time and Place: Paris (France); 4 May – 27 July 1924
Other candidates: Amsterdam, Barcelona, Los Angeles, Prague and Rome
Participation: 44 countries, 3089 athletes
Number of sports: 17 sports, 126 events
Number of Slovenian athletes: 11
Fire lit by: the Olympic fire was lit for the first time in Amsterdam in 1928. Gaston Doumergue (President of France)
Olympic oath: Georges Andre (track and field)


[Translate to English:] Zanimivosti s poletnih olimpijskih iger Pariz 1924

The return of the Olympic spirit to the city of the Seine is for the greatest part due to Pierre de Coubertin who was at the time handing over his position at the head of the Olympic organization to Belgian Henri de Baillet -Latour. The French did their best this time and repaired the poor impression they left with the 1900 Olympics. The venues were superb (a new stadium with a circular track, swimming stadium for 10,000 spectators ...) and even set up an Olympic village for the athletes. The Paris Games also marked the beginning of a new era in sports journalism as sports fans were able to listen to direct live coverage ov events on their radios.

The Games were held without any German athletes who were still banned for the role of their country in the First World War. De Cubertin was very much in favor of reconciliation, but he could not persuade other members of the IOC.


The role of the greatest star of the Summer Olympics was assumed by Finnish track and field athlete Paavo Nurmi who was also the crowd favorite. The Fin won five gold medals, two of which he won within a single hour. Nurmi won four medals before at the Antwerp Games and added another three in Amsterdam in 1928. His compatriot Ville Ritola also achieved notable results and who could forget the legendary America swimmer Johnny Weissmüller who went on to star as Tarzan on the silver screen. One of the Olympic champions of the Games was also Slovenian Leon Štukelj.


Slovenians and the 1924 Summer Olympics


The Paris Olympics hosted 11 Slovenian athletes and marked the beginning of the Olympic era of Leon Štukelj (1898-1999), an undisputed legend of Slovenian sport. The gymnast and jurist from Novo mesto first thrilled the gymnastics fans at the 1922 World Championships and went on to win two Olympic gold medals in Paris. He subdued the international gymnastics elite in the overall competition and also received a gold medal for his flawless high bar routine. The Sokol sports society member also achieved fourth places in the vault and the rings. Upon his return to his home town of Novo mesto, he was welcomed by mayor Dr. Režek with the words: "Ave triumphator!" Other Slovenian gymnasts were not far behind. Beside a fourth place finish in the team competition where Štukelj competed along with Janez Porenta, Stane Žilič, Michael Oswald, Stane Derganc, Stane Hlastan, Rastko Poljanšek and Jože Primožič, a fourth place in the pommel horse was achieved by Hlastan while Derganc and Žilič achieved fifth place (climbing and horse).