Summer Olympic Games


August 11, 2022

The Summer Olympic Games (LOI; English: Summer Olympic Games; French: Jeux olympiques d'été) are an international multi-sport event held every four years in a different city. The first games were held in 1896 in Athens (Greece), and the last in 2021 in Tokyo (Japan). The International Olympic Committee organizes the games and oversees preparations in the host city. For each Olympic event, gold medals are awarded for first place, silver medals for second place, and bronze medals for third place; this tradition was started in 1904. The Winter Olympics were created based on the success of the Summer Olympics. In the beginning (1896), only 42 disciplines were competed at the Summer Olympics and less than 250 male competitors from 14 countries participated, and by 2012 this statistic had increased to 302 disciplines with 10,768 competitors (5,992 men and 4,776 women) from 204 countries. Nineteen countries have so far hosted competitors of the Summer Olympics. The United States has hosted the competition four times (1904, 1932, 1984 and 1996), more than any other country; Great Britain has hosted three Summer Olympics (1908, 1948 and 2012), all three times in London. Four cities have hosted twice: Los Angeles (1932 and 1984), Paris (1900 and 1924), Athens (1896 and 2004) and Tokyo (1964 and 2020). The only Summer Olympic Games held so far in the Southern Hemisphere were in Australia (Melbourne 1956 and Sydney 2000) and Brazil (Rio de Janeiro 2016). The Rio Games were the first Summer Olympics in South America and the first Summer Olympics held during the local winter season. Five countries — Greece, Australia, France, Great Britain and Switzerland — have participated in every Summer Olympics. The only country to win at least one gold medal at every Summer Olympics is Great Britain. The United States leads the overall table.


The International Olympic Committee was founded in 1894 when Pierre de Coubertin, a French educator and historian, sought to promote international understanding through sporting competitions. The first edition of the Olympic Games was held in Athens in 1896 and attracted only 245 competitors, more than 200 of whom were Greek, and only 14 countries were represented. However, no international events of this kind have been organized before