/pen tath"leuhn, -lon/, n.
1. an athletic contest comprising five different track and field events and won by the contestant gaining the highest total score.
[1700-10; < Gk pénthathlon, equiv. to pent- PENT- + âthlon contest]

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Athletic contest entailing five distinct types of competitions.

In the ancient Olympic Games, the pentathlon included a sprint, the long jump, discus throw, javelin throw, and a wrestling match. A modified version (with a medium-distance race substituted for the wrestling match) was included in the revived Olympic Games (1912–24). The modern, or military, pentathlon, included in the Olympics from 1912 and made a team event in 1952, includes an equestrian steeplechase, fencing, pistol shooting, a freestyle swim, and a cross-country run. Women's pentathlon competition (shot put, high jump, hurdling race, sprint, and long jump) was replaced in 1981 by the heptathlon.

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▪ athletic contest
      athletic contest entailing five distinct types of competition. In the ancient Greek Olympics, the pentathlon included a race the length of the stadium (about 183 m [200 yd]), the long jump, the discus throw, the javelin throw, and a wrestling match between the two athletes who performed best in the previous four events. This Greek pentathlon was adapted for modern track-and-field competition by setting the sprint distance at 200 m and by substituting a 1,500-m run for the wrestling match. The event was included in the Olympic Games from 1912 through 1924.

 The modern pentathlon, based on the skills (fencing, shooting, swimming, running, and horseback riding) needed by a battlefield courier, was first included in the Olympic Games of 1912, and it was a team event from 1952 to 1992. In 2000 it became a women's event in the Olympics. Originally a five-day contest, the modern pentathlon was shortened to four days in 1984 and one day in 1996. In 1956 scoring changed from points for placings to point totals based on charts of performance levels. The shooting competition currently requires that air pistols be used to fire 20 shots at 20 targets from a distance of 10 m. The fencing competition is a round-robin tournament comprising one-minute, one-touch épée duels. The freestyle swim covers 200 m. Competitors draw unfamiliar horses for a show jumping competition on a 350- to 450-m course with 12 obstacles. The final event is a 3,000-m cross-country run. The modern pentathlon is governed by the Union Internationale du Pentathlon Moderne et Biathlon.

      From 1964 to 1980, individual women competed in an Olympic athletics event known as the pentathlon, which included the shot put, high jump, 100-m hurdles, 200-m dash, and long jump (see also heptathlon).

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • pentathlon — [ pɛ̃tatlɔ̃ ] n. m. • 1750; pentathle 1581; lat. pentathlum, du gr. pentathlon, de athlon « combat » ♦ Antiq. Sport pratiqué par les athlètes grecs et romains et qui comprenait cinq exercices. ♢ (1906) Mod. Pentathlon classique (courses de deux… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • pentathlon — [pen tath′län΄, pen tath′lən] n. [Gr pentathlon < penta , five + athlon, a prize, contest] 1. an athletic contest in which each contestant takes part in five events (long jump, javelin throw, 200 meter dash, discus throw, and 1,500 meter run)… …   English World dictionary

  • pentathlon — 1852, from Gk. pentathlon, from pente five (see FIVE (Cf. five)) + athlon prize, contest, of uncertain origin. Earlier in L. form pentathlum (1706). The Gk. version consisted of jumping, sprinting, discus and spear throwing, and wrestling. The… …   Etymology dictionary

  • pentathlon — o pentatlón sustantivo masculino 1. (no contable) Área: deporte Conjunto de cinco pruebas que realizaba un mismo atleta en la antigua Grecia. Locuciones 1. pentathlon moderno …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • pentathlon — ► NOUN ▪ an athletic event comprising five different events for each competitor, in particular (modern pentathlon) a men s event involving fencing, shooting, swimming, riding, and cross country running. DERIVATIVES pentathlete noun. ORIGIN Greek …   English terms dictionary

  • Pentathlon — Pen*tath lon, n. [NL., fr. Gr. ?; ? five + ? a contest.] (Gr. Antiq.) 1. A fivefold athletic performance peculiar to the great national games of the Greeks, including leaping, foot racing, wrestling, throwing the discus, and throwing the spear.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Pentathlon — (gr.), die Übungen im Wettlauf, Springen, Ringen, Diskos u. Speerwerfen, s.u. Gymnastik 1) A) e) u. vgl. Kampfspiele …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Péntāthlon — (griech., »Fünfkampf«), in der griech. Gymnastik (s. d.) ein aus den fünf Kampfgängen des Weitsprungs, Speerwurfs, Wettlaufs, Diskoswurfs und Ringens zusammengesetzter Wettkampf, bei dem nach den einzelnen Gängen die Besiegten ausschieden und… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Pentathlon — Pentāthlon (grch., »Fünfkampf«), bei den alten Griechen ein aus den fünf Kampfarten (Weitsprung, Speerwurf, Wettlauf, Diskoswurf, Ringen) zusammengesetzter Wettkampf. – Vgl. Pinder (1867) …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Pentathlon — The pentathlon was first documented in Ancient Greece, and included the discus and javelin throw. A pentathlon is a contest featuring five different events. The name is derived from Greek: combining the words pente (five) and athlon (competition) …   Wikipedia

  • Pentathlon — Vase mit den drei wichtigsten Sportarten des Fünfkampfes: Diskus und Speerwerfer, für den Weitsprung sieht man die Springgewichte (halteres) im Hintergrund oben. Attisch rotfigurige Schale, 490 v.Chr., bemalt von Onesimos. Das Pentathlon war eine …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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