Over the course of the archaic and classical periods, the inhabitants of Elis were Perioeci—autonomous free non-citizens. Perioeci, unlike other Spartans, could travel freely between cities. Thus the polis of Elis was formed. Thus the spirit of this sacred place remains today. Olympia, the Elian land, owns the tradition of the first Olympic games since 776 BC and still imparts its light of freedom to the four corners of the earth every four years.
The Olympic flame of the modern-day Olympic Games is lit by reflection of sunlight in a parabolic mirror in front of the Temple of Hera and then transported by a torch to the place where the Games are held. The eternal sunlight is shone over the entire valley and mountainous regions. This sunlight is the cornerstone of existence, freedom and grandeur