About the photo: A fire burns in an Olympic cauldron after being lit during the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, August 6, 2016.
The Associated Press has covered every modern Olympics, and that includes photos of the Olympic flames along the torch relay route and on the cauldron.
The Olympic flame was introduced at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics. The torch relay started eight years later on the eve of the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
The flames began their life at a lighting ceremony in Ancient Olympia, where the original Olympics were held for centuries.
Over the years, the flames have played an increasingly large role at opening ceremonies, with the identity of the final torchbearer – often a great former Olympian from the host country – becoming a hot topic of discussion.
Muhammad Ali, gold medalist at the 1960 Rome Olympics, lit the torch at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. Four years later, Cathy Freeman lit a fire in Sydney and was the only person to light a cauldron and win a gold medal in the same event.
One of the most memorable lights came at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics when Paralympic archer Antonio Rebollo fired a flaming arrow over the cauldron, igniting gas from within.
The torch relay for the postponed Tokyo Olympics starts Thursday, but don’t expect to find out the name of the person who lit the cauldron on July 23 at the opening ceremony until sometime before it happens.
And when that happens, the AP will be there to document it.