Billed as Bolt v Blake II, the 25-year-old secured the gold with his friend and rival Yohan Blake winning the silver and their compatriot Warren Weir finishing fast to get the bronze.
Bolt missed out on breaking the world record, finishing in 19:32, meaning that his 2009 record of 19:19 still stands. But in retaining both his 100m and 200m Olympic titles, he achieved something that had eluded even the great Carl Lewis.
Bolt started quickly, but Blake closed the gap after the bend. It wasn’t enough and Bolt increased his lead again and then appeared to slow slightly as he approached the finish line.
As he crossed the line to thunderous cheers, he put a finger to his lips as if to hush his critics.
After the race, Bolt gave his customary arms outstretched, lighting bolt pose, before milking applause from spectators on his victory parade, draped in a Jamaican flag.
Bolt sealed his place in Olympic history on Sunday as he became only the second man to successfully defend the 100m title.
The Jamaican clocked a new Games best of 9.63 seconds on his way to gold.
After the race, Bolt admitted that he had a rough season, but he added: “I am proud of myself.”
He revealed that he had still been hopeful of breaking the world record in the 200m but added that he was not fully fit.
Bolt and Blake may reappear tomorrow for Jamaica’s 4 x 100m relay qualifying heats.
Earlier in the session, David Rudisha of Kenya broke the world record to take the 800m Olympic title.
The 23-year-old crossed the line in 1:40.91 beating his own mark set two years ago.
Britain’s Andrew Osagie was last to cross the line but described appearing being in the record breaking race as “an honour”.