“Look at those five rings. Baron Pierre de Coubertin said that they symbolised the five great Olympic virtues of athleticism, sportsmanship, exertion, poverty, chastity…or whatever. Well, roughly those ones.”
Boris Johnson, 27 June 2012
Cathy Newman checks it out
It looked like magic: five giant Olympic rings hovering apparently in mid-air above the Thames. It was also one helluva media circus, and – perhaps not surprisingly given the £300,000 cost of making and installing the rings – the Mayor of London was clearly determined to milk it for all it was worth.
When I interviewed him this morning, he gestured towards the bridge with his customary flamboyance and began to explain just what those five rings represented. He didn’t get very far. But he piqued my curiosity.
So when I got back into the office, I thought I’d find out just what the rings meant, and if, as Boris Johnson, suggested, it had anything to do with the Olympic ideals.