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Women dressed as vestal virgins acted as guardians of the flame during the lighting ceremony. The torch, specially made for the lighting ceremony, was used to transfer the flame to the archaic pot which was taken via an ancient pathway to the site of the first Olympic Games.

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Greek actress Menegaki lights the Olympic flame during the torch lighting ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the site of ancient Olympia in Greece. JOHN KOLESIDIS/REUTERS