The Olympic flame is a symbol of the Olympic Games. The torch ceremony honors the theft of fire from the Greek god Zeus by Prometheus, an ancient tale within Greek Mythology. Its origins lie in ancient Greece, where a fire was kept burning throughout the celebration of the ancient Olympics.
The fire was reintroduced at the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam, and it has been part of the modern Olympic Games ever since. (Below are pictures from the Archaeological Site of Olympia)
The Olympic Torch today is ignited several months before the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games at the site of the ancient Olympics in Olympia, Greece. The torch travels around Greece in a short relay, and then starts its transfer to the host city after a ceremony in Athens.
The Olympic Torch Relay ends on the day of the opening ceremony in the central stadium of the Games. After being lit, the flame continues to burn throughout the Games, and is put out on the day of the closing celebration.
The modern idea of moving the Olympic flame through a series of relay’s from Greece to the current Olympic City began in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. The Olympic flame was lit in Olympia, Greece and transported by 3,331 runners in twelve days and eleven nights from Greece to Berlin.