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Spyros Louis Cup

Short film on the history of the 1896 Olympic Games that took place in Athens, Spyros Louis’s victory in the Marathon Race, and Michel Breal’s Silver Cup awarded to the winner.

On April 18, 2012 the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) announced that it acquired Bréal’s Silver Cup, the first Marathon Winner’s Cup presented to Spyros Louis at the inaugural Modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896, in an auction held at Christie’s, where it was being offered for sale for the first time by the runner’s grandson.

The SNF’s decision to participate in the auction was motivated by the Cup’s historical significance both as an Olympic and a national artifact. The SNF announced immediately its commitment to make the Cup available to the public and to share it with everyone by displaying it permanently at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, upon its completion. In the interim, more than 3,500,000 visitors have had the opportunity of viewing the Cup during its exhibit at the Acropolis Museum in Athens (September 2012 – August 2014 and April 2015 – January 2016). The Cup was also hosted for 6 months at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne (September 2014 – March 2015), during a period that coincided with the International Marathon of Lausanne, which attracted approximately 3,000 runners from around the world, enabling both athletes and visitors to see this historic Olympic artifact from up close.  Τhe Spyros Louis Cup was also temporarily on display at the Museum of the Ancient Olympic Games in celebration of the Olympic Flame Lighting Ceremony for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, which were ultimately postponed due to COVID-19.

The Cup is now exhibited at the SNFCC Agora. 

Booklet on the Spyros Louis’s Bréal Cup