The book goes further than the title would indicate. Rather than stop with the order of Emperor Theodosius in 393 A.D. that ended the series of competitions begun in 776 B.C., the authors go on to cover the rebirth of the Olympics in 1896. The spirit of sportsmanship and the ethics by which competing athletes were expected to abide as well as the culture that produced them are discussed at brief but meaningful length. Each sport in which the ancients engaged is described for necessary equipment and the rules governing it. The pagan rituals observed as the original Games as well as the decadence and professionalism that crept in as Greek power declined is recorded. A pronouncing glossary of Greek words concludes a well organized text.