Commonwealth games, series of amateur athletic meets held among citizens of countries in the Commonwealth of Nations. Originated (1930) as the British Empire games, the series is held every four years and is patterned after the Olympic games; women have participated since 1934. In their early stages the games enjoyed the patronage of King George V. As with the Olympics, they have been subject to political pressure, a notable example being the 1986 boycott by some nations protesting Britain's refusal to impose sanctions against South Africa.
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