London 2012 Olympics: Boris Johnson to recite Olympic Ode in ancient Greek
By Sophia Heath
July 23, 2012
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson will recite an Olympic ode for the first time at the Opening Gala for the International Olympic Committee on Monday evening. Mr Johnson, who studied classics at Oxford, will recite the poem that he commissioned for the Games in both Greek and English.
The ode was created by Oxford academic Armand D'Angour who wrote the poem in ancient Greek with modern lyrics and then translated the six verses into rhyming couplets.
The Mayor said: 'I am delighted to have the opportunity to declaim Dr D’Angour’s glorious Olympic Ode at the Opening Gala, a work that breathes new life into the ancient custom of celebrating the greatness of the Games through poetry.
“I have no doubt that the members of the International Olympic Committee are fully versed in ancient Greek, but to ensure the elaborate puns can be fully appreciated I shall have the pleasure of vocalising the Ode twice, once in Greek and then again in English.
“I shall try to resist the temptation to regale the attendees a further time in Latin, though I cannot make any promises."
Read the full article, which includes the text of the ode in English and in ancient Greek, at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/olympics/news/9420192/London-2012-Olympics-Boris-Johnson-to-recite-Olympic-Ode-in-ancient-Greek.html
For more background information, see this blog entry: http://rogueclassicism.com/2011/10/27/primus-a-boris