Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Spartakiad initially was the name of an international sports event that the Soviet Union attempted to oppose the Olympics. (In Russian language, there is a certain parallelism in the names: "Spartakiada" vs. "Olimpiada".) The name, derived from the name of the slave rebel leader, Spartacus, was supposed to symbolize proletarian internationalism. The first Spartakiad was held in August, 1928 in Moscow.
Eventually the Soviet Union decided to join the Olympic movement, and international Spartakiads ceased. However the term persisted for internal sports events in the Soviet Union of different levels, from local up to the Spartakiad of the Peoples of the USSR ("Спартакиада народов СССР"). The latter event was held twice in four years: Winter Spartakiad and Summer Spartakiad, with international participation. The first Soviet Spartakiad was held in 1956.
There was also "Youth Spartakiad". Still another Soviet sports event with this name, Спартакиада профсоюзов, Spartakiad of Trade Unions survived in a number of post Soviet republics, such as Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Uzbekistan.
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