Charles Gmelin

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Charles Gmelin
Personal information
Born (1872-05-28)28 May 1872
Krishnagar, India
Died 12 October 1950(1950-10-12) (aged 78)
Oxford, England
Sport Sprinting
Event(s) 100m, 400m

Charles Henry Stuart Gmelin (28 May 1872 – 12 October 1950) was a British athlete. He competed at the 1896 Summer Olympics in Athens.[1][2]

Personal life[edit]

Gmelin was born in Bengal, India, where his father was a Christian missionary, but returned to England at an early age for schooling.

He was educated at Magdalen College School and Keble College, Oxford. After graduating he took holy orders and later become headmaster of Freshfields School in Oxford. Gmelin was an all-round sportsman who represented Oxfordshire at both football and cricket.

Olympic record[edit]

He had the distinction of being the first British athlete to compete in Olympic competition when he finished third in the inaugural heat of the 100 metres. He did not advance to the final.

He was more successful in the 400 metres where he finished second behind Thomas Burke of the United States in his preliminary heat. This qualified him for the final, where he placed third behind the United States pairing of Burke and Herbert Jamison in a time of 55.6 seconds. For many years the German runner Fritz Hofmann was incorrectly listed as placing ahead of Gmelin.

Although no awards were made for third place in the 1896 Summer Olympics he is usually credited as a bronze medal winner.


  1. ^ "Olympics Statistics: Charles Gmelin". Retrieved 2012-10-04. 
  2. ^ "Charles Gmelin Olympic Results". Retrieved 2012-10-04.