News

Do you know what the Olympic rings stand for?

Do you know what the Olympic rings stand for?

RINGS AND THINGS: International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams says "the rings are not assigned to each continent," despite popular legend." Photo: Associated Press

SOCHI, Russia (AP) — No, the different-colored Olympic rings don’t correspond to specific continents.

But you’d be forgiven for thinking differently if you’re going to or from Sochi’s airport.

Five enormous concrete sculptures of the rings welcome visitors, each labeled in bold letters, in Russian and English, with the name of a continent: Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, the Americas.

SPECIAL SECTION: 2014 Winter Olympics

Trouble is, that’s wrong. International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams says “the rings are not assigned to each continent,” despite popular legend. “I don’t know how that happened, but I don’t think it’s a major issue.”

Olympic historian Philip Barker says an information panel at the 2000 Sydney games similarly misled visitors by attaching continents to specific rings.

When Pierre de Coubertin, considered the founder of the modern Olympics, designed the rings a century ago, he chose black, red, yellow, green and blue because every flag in the world bore at least one of those colors, according to the Olympic Museum.

When one of the rings failed to open during the Sochi Olympic opening ceremony last week, some pesky tweeters perpetuated the continent-color myth and a bit of Cold War nostalgia. They noted the missing ring was the red one — mistakenly considered the American ring. Nope.

Recent Headlines

in Lifestyle, National

Macy’s test stores to offer deals at ‘Backstage’ prices

macys

The retailer will open the first of four "discount" stores this fall in NYC.

in Music

Miguel sued over stage dive

25-overlay2

The R&B star is being sued by a woman who claims she was injured when he jumped off the stage and crashed into her.

in Music

Mariah Carey heading back to Billboard after 17 years

mariahcarey

The diva is set to perform on the Billboard Music Awards for the first time in 17 years, but the she is keeping quiet on what song she she'll sing.

in Lifestyle

Amazon Prime members can stream in the sky

amazon

Amazon wants to give JetBlue passengers a new option for tuning out that crying baby or talkative seat neighbor.

in Viral Videos

WATCH: ‘Star Wars’ LEGO Super Star Destroyer shattered

18-overlay

It took $800 and 16 hours to build this epic "Star Wars" set ... and only a few seconds to smash it.

Weather

condition Condition: Overcast
Temperature: 73°
High: 77° - Low: 51°