Authors: Terry Deary
Tags: #ebook, #book
Illustrated by Helen Flook
C Black • London
First published 2007 by
A & C Black Publishers Ltd
36 Soho Square, London, W1D 3QY
Text copyright © 2007 Terry Deary
Illustrations copyright © 2007 Helen Flook
The rights of Terry Deary and Helen Flook to be identified as the author and illustrator of this work have been asserted by them in accordance with the Copyrights, Designs and Patents Act 1988.
A CIP catalogue for this book is available from the British Library.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means – graphic, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping or information storage and retrieval systems – without the prior permission in writing of the publishers.
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Printed and bound in Great Britain
by CPI Cox & Wyman, Reading RG1 8EX.
Table of Contents
Olympia, Greece, 776 BC
Aesop the Greek storyteller said:
Slow and steady wins the race
It started with the mighty Heracles, the hero of the gods. Heracles won a race at Olympia, the home of the gods. Well, he would win a race – he was the strongest, fastest hero the world has ever known. I think he was like a lot of men. Vain.
“The world must remember my great victory,” Heracles said. “Humans must have races every four years! They will be called the Olympics.”
The priests said it was a good idea and that’s how the games began.
But Heracles didn’t just start the Olympic Games … he started a lot of trouble.
Oh, yes, a lot of people enjoy watching the winners. They love the show, the sport and the excitement. But what about the cheating? What about the arguments?
What about the losers? And what about the women? Women are not allowed to race, of course. They are not even allowed to watch. If they try, they are executed … thrown off a cliff.
Ooooh! It makes me so angry. I am an angry sort of person. I was angry when I was a girl, all those years ago, and I am still angry when I remember…
I am angry with my brother, Cypselis.
Cypselis had a bet on a race. And what was the prize? Me! Yes, he bet his own
do that? No, of course not. So do not blame me for being angry now when I tell you the tale of ‘The Tortoise and the Dare’.
My brother Cypselis ran in from school, bubbling like a soup pot. He was so happy he didn’t notice how miserable the family was.