c. 1600, "of or in reference to Mount Olympos," the mountain in Thessaly, believed to be the home of the greater Greek gods. Also in reference to to Olympia (khōra), a town or district in Elis in ancient Greece with a famous temple of Zeus, where athletic contests in honor of Olympian Zeus were held 776 B.C.E. and every four years thereafter. It is from Greek Olympikos, from Olympos, which in both places is of unknown origin (see Olympus). The modern Olympic games are a revival, begun in 1896. Olympics, short for Olympic games, is from 1630s.