Since the Germans created the tradition for the 1936 Olympics, the lighting of the Olympic Torch begins in Ancient Olympia, in Greece, to be carried to each new city hosting the Olympic Games.
Several months before the Olympics, a new fire is lit at the Temple of Hera by temple priestesses using the light of the sun and a parabolic mirror.
The flame is kept in an urn at the temple, recognized as the flame of Zeus, king of the Greek gods.
During the lighting ceremony, a priestess releases a dove, and other priestesses dance.
A torchbearer arrives at Ancient Olympia. Like Prometheus, he steals the flame of Zeus, and carries the flame away for the benefit of humanity.
What comes next is a series of torchbearers, carrying the torch in a relay first around Greece, and then to the city hosting the Olympic Games. This tradition has continued since 1936 and was carried on again for the 2012 Olympics in London.