Emil Zatopek of what was then Czechoslovakia won the 10,000m at the 1948 London Games, lapping all but two runners in the field. He also picked up a silver in the 5,000m.
Japan's Yasuhiro Yamashita won gold in the open-class judo competition at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.
Before rising to on-screen prominence as Tarzan, Johnny Weissmuller starred at the Paris and Amsterdam Olympics in 1924 and 1928.
Finland's Lasse Viren made his Olympic debut in the 1972 Munich Games, managing to win the 10,000m despite falling during the race and taking gold in the 5,000m 10 days later.
The "Thorpedo" won five gold medals, three in Sydney and two more in the Athens 2004 Games, including winning the gruelling 400m freestyle race twice.
Cuba's Stevenson, hailed as one of the best boxers of his time though he never turned professional, was the first fighter to win the gold medal in the same division three times.
US swimmer Spitz made his name at the 1972 Munich Olympics, winning all seven events he entered and setting a world record in every one.
Russian gymnast Boris Shaklin won a remarkable seven gold medals in three consecutive Olympic Games - Melbourne in 1956, Rome in 1960 and Tokyo in 1964.
Steven Redgrave was a winning member of the British coxed fours crew at the 1984 Los Angeles Games, and won golds in 1988 and 1992 in the coxless pairs.
In Beijing, Phelps surpassed compatriot Mark Spitz's 36-year-old record of seven gold medals at one Games with a haul of eight - seven of them with world record times.