But these are modern establishments. One of Rome's ancient marvels, the Baths of Caracalla, which once accommodated 1,600 bathers, will now accommodate gymnasts. The marathon will start at the steps of the Campidoglio (Capitol) and finish at the Arch of Constantine by the light of torches. Wrestling will be at the Basilica of Maxentius.
And the Games will spur Roman society to special gaiety. There will be fancy parties—terrazza celebrations in penthouses and private villas, the guests enchanted by the city's night vista of shadowy domes and spires, floodlit ruins and torch-lighted palaces reflected against the dark blue velvet sky. Among the guests will be Prince Axel and Princess Margaretha of Denmark, Prince and Princess Albert de Liège, Prince Gholam Reza Pahlevi, Prince and Princess Jean de Luxembourg, and so on. There have been rumors that the Shah of Iran, Prince Rainier and Princess Grace, the Duke of Edinburgh and Princess Margaret and her husband will attend the Games.
The Olympic flame is on its way to light the grandest Games that the Baron Pierre de Coubertin ever dreamed of. On the evening of August 25, after the opening ceremonies, the Games will begin with boxing at the Palazzetto dello Sport and water polo at the Piscina delle Rose. Not until the seventh day, August 31, will the qualifications start in track and field, with finals in shotput and broad jump. The Games will continue until Sunday, September 11, the 18th day, when the grand-prix jump and closing ceremonies take over the Olympic Stadium.
Then those indignant Romans, so intolerant of trifles while the city was being made ready, will know Rome has again made history.