These first games were marked by a contest very important for the Greeks: the marathon. This event was Indeed registered to the program to the request of Marcel Breal (French).
But they were also the first official case boycott: Turkey who had already printed stamps on the Olympics in fact refused to take part. Money was lacking to organize and finance these games in spite of grants given by Zappas, so they decided to launch and appeal for good wills,
M. Averoff, a rich Greek ship-owner living in Egypt offered several millions of drachmas to rebuilt the ancient stadium. To thank him, a statue was setup at the entrance of the stadium.
March 25 was chosen as the date of the opening ceremony because it is the day of the national day