At about 10:30 the Royal Family arrives except for the Queen who is indisposed, and together with the Grand Duke George, being received with the customary honours, takes its places on the porphyry covered seats. Close to the Royal seats a place is given to the Egyptian prince Mehmet Ali Pasha, brother of the Khedive, who came to the stadium, as well as to his retinue. After the arrival of the Royal Family permission is given to the crowds outside the entrance to enter the stadium, without tickets, and thus the stadium is over-filled. So soon as the Royal Family is seated the English professor of Oxford University, Mr. Robertson advances to the King and, recites an Olympic Ode which he has composed in ancient Greek and in Pindaric metre. This ode replete with high meanings and warm philhellenism celebrates the glory of the Olympic Games. The King listens attentively. At the end of the Ode enthusiastic applause is heard and the King warmly congratulates the poet.
After this the King takes up a standing position on the carpeted platform in front of the Royal seats. On a table to His left are the prizes, a branch of wild olive from the Sacred altis, a branch of laurel, the diplomas within blue and white circular rolls, the medals, silver for the first and bronze for the second, works of the engraver Chaplain, of beautiful artistic merit, the presents destined for the winners, among which can be distinguished the silver cup offered by Mr. Bréal, Member of the Institute of France, destined for the winner of the Marathon race, and also an ancient ceramic which Mr. John P. Lambros sent to the Crown Prince with this noteworthy letter:
The splendour which the Marathon race is called to impart to the Olympic Games, joined to the ancient character of this laborious contest, of which the winner is to be envied, has persuaded me to offer from my collection as a prize this ancient vase, much to the point and with a fine representation of a dolichos runner under the supervision of the judges.
I hope that Your Royal Highness will permit that this prize which antiquity has bequeathed to us be added to the silver cup of Professor Bréal so that thus the ancient world may appear to be celebrating with the modern the Marathon runners.
Close to the King at a small distance stands the Crown Prince with the twelve members of the Council, together with the General Secretary Mr. Philemon.
Opposite the stand are arrayed the Olympic winners, wearing morning suits, according to the programme. The white foustanella and the joyful stature of Louis can be distinguished among them, whose entry into the stadium on this day was triumphal.
Artillery captain Ch. Hadjipetros acts, this day, as herald, who, with a loud voice calls upon each on of the Olympic winners, calling his name, his country and the event in which he distinguished himself. The person called upon advances, ascends the few steps of the platform, bows in front of the King, who addresses him with a few congratulatory words, hands to him the diploma, the medal and the wild olive branch, shaking his hand, after which the Olympic winner departs after bowing. The crowd cheers after each name is announced. It is understood that the cheers and applause are more vivid the more the Olympic winner is known and is sympathetic to them and the more important that is the event.
The Olympic victors called upon, in their turn.
When the turn came for Louis and the intrepid victor of the Marathon race mounted the platform the whole of the stadium stirred. One endless shout from tens of thousands of mouths, a rumble as of thunder burst from every side, hats and handkerchiefs waved for a long time spasmodically, small Greek flags were produced and were waved triumphally, pairs of pigeons with ribbons of the national colours were released and flew above the arena. General emotion fills the crowd and all eyes are humid and the foreigners remain in ecstacy before the unique sight. The crowd bestowed also lively sympathy to the Hungarians, to the German Schumann, and the Americans, who bore on the breasts the Greek signs, and also to some others.
After this the second place winners appear and receive from the hands of the King a branch of laurel and the bronze medal. To the first winners were also given the various gifts and prizes donated by private individuals. Gravelotte received a fine silver cup, the gift of the Athens Club. Karasevdas a rifle and Frangoudis a pistol. Finally the King gave a branch of laurel to Robertson the poet of the Prindaric Ode.
After the distribution of the prices, Mr. Gaebhardt, the representative of Germany in Athens for the Olympic Games offered to the Crown Prince a crown of laurel tied with ribbons of the Greek and German colours, accompanying it with an enthusiastic and eloquent speech, to which the Crown Prince replied by a few words in German, in thanking him.
After this, in accord with the programme the parade of the Olympic winners took place in the stadium. Led by Mr. Manos, director of the Games, the Olympic Winners and those placed second, bearing the honourable prize of a branch of wild olive or laurel, proceed round the arena, at a slow pace, to the enthusiastic playing of the drawn up bands. In the first rank is Louis, who, moved, guidy and lost through the continuous expressions, waved kisses right and left with both hands. At the edge of the track one of the onlookers gave him a small Greek flag and this he carried to the end of the parade waving it enthusiastically.
At the end of the parade the King proclaimed in a loud voice:
Then on impulse a manifestation is organised. The whole of the crowd together with the Council of Twelve and with Mr. Philemon at their head, with the bands leading and together with the flags of the various nations, born by the ushers of the stadium, moves towards the Palace and demands by shouts for the Crown Prince to appear, who appears at the propylaea together with the Princes George and Nicholas. Then Mr. L. Deligeorgis, on behalf of the Council offers the Crown Prince a wreath of laurel and makes a suitable address, to which the Crown Prince replies, ending up with cheers for the Nation. Then Mr. Orfanidis speaks on behalf of the Olympic Winners, and the Crown Prince at once replies. Then the procession proceeds to the offices of the Council of the Olympic Games , where the Member of Parliament Mr. Papamihalopoulos, member of the Committee for the training of the Greek athletes, addressed Mr. D. Vikelas, President of the International Committee of the Games expressing the sentiments of the Greek people, and Mr. Tim. Philemon, the Secretary General. And then the crowd dispersed.
In the evening the Acropolis was illuminated with torches. That glory spread on the Parthenon and the Propylaea and imparting to the glorious ruins incomparable beauty now symbolised triumpharltlv the new triumph of the ancient spirit by the wonderful success of the Games.
The series of festivities was sealed by the banquet offered to the foreign athletes on the following day at Kifissia by the Municipality of Athens. The number of invited was about 160, among whom the Crown Prince, the Princes George and Nicholas, the Cabinet, the members of the various Committees, the foreign representatives and athletes, the representatives of the press etc. During the banquet, the Mayor of Athens, toasted the King, then toasting the Crown Prince and Princes George and Nicholas, for they in particular, through their activities, contributed to the success of the Games. The Crown Prince replied eloquently in thanks. Mr. Philemon toasted the Government, to which the Prime Minister Mr. Deliyannis replied. Other toasts followed, the last of which, and most enthusiastic was that of Mr. Kémény.
The banquet finished among cheers after the participants had first been photographed together.
And from the following day the foreigners left in groups for their homelands, despatched up to the last moment, with signs of affection, and taking with them impressions of affection and admiration for Greece, and with firm conviction, that, according to the Royal sentence that Greece was destined to be the peaceful meeting ground of the Nations, the permanent and continual field of the Olympic Games.