The Morning Swim Show, Feb. 8, 2012: Ancient Greek Painting Details Early History of Aquatic Sports

PHOENIX, Arizona, February 8. TODAY'S edition of The Morning Swim Show features Bruce Wigo, CEO of ISHOF, talking about an ancient relic he found in Italy that dates swimming back more than two thousand years.

At the site of ancient baths in a former Greek colony in Italy, he found a painting of an early aquatic athlete that highlights how long swimming has been a part of human history. Be sure to visit SwimmingWorld.TV for more video interviews.

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Morning Swim Show Transcripts
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(Note: This is an automated service where some typos and grammatical errors may occur.)

Peter Busch: Welcome to The Morning Swim Show for Wednesday, February 8, 2012. I'm your host Peter Busch. In the FINIS monitor we're catching up with our old friend Bruce Wigo, the CEO of the International Swimming Hall of Fame. They have some new videos in their already incredible archive, so we're going to do a series of shows to highlight a handful of them. And Bruce joins us right now in the FINIS monitor from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Hey Bruce, welcome back to the show. How are you doing?

Bruce Wigo: Hey, good to be back Peter.

Peter Busch: All right, let's talk about the Tomb of the Diver – what's that all about?

Bruce Wigo: Well you know, swimming is a sport rather than a cultural force in our history, it's kind of something that we're interested here in the Hall of Fame. Swimming's not just about the Olympics but its influence in our culture and world history in ways that I think a lot of people can't imagine. When I was in Italy for the World Championships in 2009 I had a chance to see the oldest image and representation of an aquatic athlete in Greek art which dates back to I think it's 500 BC and this was the painting of the Tomb of the Diver in a city called Paestum today but in the olden days when it was a Greek colony in Italy which is about 85 kilometers south of Naples, it was known as Poseidonia, which was named after the god Poseidon, the god of the sea. And not only did I find some incredible old swimming pools in this town but I really went to see the Tomb of the Diver and the Tomb of the Diver is an artwork that's on a four-sided tomb of limestone slabs and the roof of it is the one that contains this really incredible painting.


Peter Busch: Well that was pretty fascinating. You hit it on the head, the history of swimming is more than just what we've seen in Olympic pools.

Bruce Wigo: Yes, there are so many tourist sites around the world. I've been to a lot of them. I've been to the oldest pool in China and to go down to this town and see the swimming pools – just use your imagination to see how remarkable these pools were. When you go on a vacation go somewhere to find something interesting and there are certainly a lot of places to see related to the history of swimming around the world that can just blow your mind.

Peter Busch: Well Bruce thank you very much for sharing a piece of swimming history with us today. We'll see you tomorrow.

Bruce Wigo: Okay.

Peter Busch: All right, that's Bruce Wigo joining us in the FINIS monitor today and that is it for today's show. I'm Peter Busch reminding you to keep your head down at the finish.

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