Host City: Stockholm, Sweden
Venue(s): Karla Road 10, Stockholm
Date Started: May 5, 1912
Date Finished: July 27, 1912
|Gold:||Pierre, Baron de Coubertin|
The gold medal for literature was awarded to “Georges Hohrod et M. Eschbach, Germany” for the work “Ode to Sport,” which was submitted in three languages - French, English, and German. But in reality, the poetic ode had been written by Pierre, Baron de Coubertin, who entered it in the competitions under the dual pseudonym. Coubertin had used the name Georges Hohrod previously, publishing an autobiographic novel Le Roman d'un rallié, under that pseudonym in 1899. It is believed that M. Eschbach was his wife, Marie (née Rothan), who grew up partly in Germany, and that she translated the work into German.
But what of the names Hohrod and Eschbach? Until recently, the source of the names was not known. But an article by Jean Durry in Olympic Review has shed light on the mystery. Durry attempted to find the home in Luttenbach that had once belonged to the Rothan family, Coubertin's in-laws. Driving in the Fecht Valley near Alsace, Durry came across the small town of Hohrodberg. Very near Hohrodberg, Durry also found the small town of Eschbach-au-Val. Although he does not describe it in as much detail, this was noted earlier (1994) by Norbert Müller, who wrote in a footnote in his book on Olympic Congresses, “The author of this book discovered that the pseudonyms Hohrod and Eschbach were the names of two neighboring villages of the native village of Coubertin's wife, Luttenbach, near Colmar.”