Great Britain at the 1896 Summer Olympics
|Great Britain at the|
1896 Summer Olympics
|NOC||British Olympic Association|
|Competitors||10 in 7 sports|
|Summer Olympics appearances (overview)|
|Other related appearances|
|1906 Intercalated Games|
Ten athletes from the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland competed in seven sports at the 1896 Summer Olympics. The Great Britain athletes were the fifth most successful in terms of overall medals (7) and tied for fifth in gold medals (2). The 7 medals came on 23 entries in 14 events.
Two tennis players (one English, one Irish) also played in mixed team squads, contributing to a gold and a bronze medal. These medals are not counted as part of the Great Britain total.
|Gold||John Pius Boland||Tennis||Singles|
|Gold||Launceston Elliot||Weightlifting||One hand lift|
|Silver||Grantley Goulding||Athletics||110 m hurdles|
|Silver||Frederick Keeping||Cycling||12 hour race|
|Silver||Launceston Elliot||Weightlifting||Two hand lift|
|Bronze||Edward Battell||Cycling||Road race|
|Bronze||Charles Gmelin||Athletics||400 m|
The British athletes took two medals and a fourth-place finish in athletics. The 100 metres and the 800 metres were the two events in which they had little success.
|Launceston Elliot||100 m||Unknown||3||Did not advance|
|Charles Gmelin||100 m||Unknown||3||Did not advance|
|George Marshall||100 m||Unknown||5||Did not advance|
|Charles Gmelin||400 m||Unknown||2 Q||55.6|
|George Marshall||800 m||Unknown||4||Did not advance|
|Grantley Goulding||110 m hurdles||18.4||1 Q||17.6|
|George S. Robertson||Discus throw||N/A||25.20||4|
Battell and Keeping each won a medal in the cycling program, earning a 4th place and a 5th-place finish as well.
|Athlete||Event||Time / Distance||Rank|
|Edward Battell||Time trial||26.2||4|
|Frederick Keeping||Time trial||27.0||5|
|12 hour race||314.664 km|
|Athlete||Event||Time / Distance||Rank|
|Edward Battell||Road race||Unknown|
Elliot finished in last place in the rope climbing competition. He did not make it all the way up the 14-metre rope, retiring at some point below 12.5 metres (the distance of the bronze medallist).
|Launceston Elliot||Rope climbing||Unknown||5|
Merlin and Machonet were unable to win any medals in the shooting events.
|Sidney Merlin||200 m military rifle||Unknown||1156||10|
|300 m free rifle, 3 positions||Unknown||Unknown||-|
|25 m military pistol||DNF||-||-|
|25 m rapid fire pistol||DNF||-||-|
|Machonet||200 m military rifle||Unknown||Unknown||-|
Boland (later best known as an Irish nationalist politician) was by far the best player in the tennis competition, amassing a 6-0 record over both events and two gold medals, though one of them was as part of a mixed team. He defeated Traun in the first round of the singles competition, then teamed up with him for the doubles competition. Robertson was much less successful, losing both of the matches he played, though he was awarded a retroactive bronze medal by the International Olympic Committee as his bye in the doubles quarterfinals put him in third place in that event. Like Boland's doubles gold medal, Robertson's bronze is not counted as part of the British total because the two played on mixed teams.
|John Pius Boland||Singles|| Traun (GER)
| Rallis (GRE)
| Paspatis (GRE)
| Kasdaglis (GRE)
W 6-2, 6-2
|George S. Robertson||Singles|| Paspatis (GRE)
|Did not advance||8|
Elliot (born in British India of Scottish ancestry) lifted the same amount as Viggo Jensen in the two handed lift, but was declared by Prince George of Greece to have taken second place based on lifting form. In the one handed lift, he easily defeated Jensen, who lifted only 57 kilograms.
|Launceston Elliot||One hand lift||71.0|
|Two hand lift||111.5|
Elliot was defeated by eventual champion Carl Schuhmann in the first round of the wrestling competition, tying for 4th and last place.
|Launceston Elliot||Greco-Roman|| Schuhmann (GER)
|Did not advance||4|
- Lampros, S.P.; Polites, N.G.; De Coubertin, Pierre; Philemon, P.J.; Anninos, C. (1897). The Olympic Games: BC 776 – AD 1896. Athens: Charles Beck. (Digitally available at )
- Mallon, Bill; Widlund, Ture (1998). The 1896 Olympic Games. Results for All Competitors in All Events, with Commentary. Jefferson: McFarland. ISBN 0-7864-0379-9. (Excerpt available at )
- Smith, Michael Llewellyn (2004). Olympics in Athens 1896. The Invention of the Modern Olympic Games. London: Profile Books. ISBN 1-86197-342-X.