According to the written works of Ancient Historians, Skyllias and his daughter Hydna, were the very first “marathon swimmers” to ever be acknowledged globally. The story of Skyllias and Hydna describes that after several admirable diving achievements the two historical figures were arrested in 480 B.C. by Persians that wanted to use the pair of proficient divers for an extensive exploration of underwater treasures from Ancient-Greek shipwrecks.

Subsequently, the historical swimmers realized that Persians planned on using them in an upcoming naval battle in Artemision, meaning that Skyllias and Hydna would have to face their Greek compatriots. After understanding the plan of the Persian forces, the Ancient-Greek heroes jumped into the sea, sliced the ropes from the anchors of Persian ships and started swimming towards Artemision in order to inform the Greek Naval Forces.

The historical achievements of Skyllias and Hydna have been recorded by Herodotus, “The Father of History”, who has praised them for their unique swimming ability and the importance of the information they offered to the Greeks, allowing the Naval Forces to prepare for their upcoming Naval Battles and their eventual triumph. Hence, in this way the first-ever ultra long-distance swim was recorded 2500 years ago, as Herodotus claimed that the two swimmers covered approximately 80 cables or 9 nautical miles.

In honour of the first long-distance swimmers to be recorded, The Authentic Marathon Swim will take place in the straits of Artemision – the location of the historical Naval Battle between the Greek and Persian forces. Hence, the open-water swimming event provides swimmers of the modern era with an opportunity of replicating the historical achievement of Skyllias and Hydna by swimming over the shipwrecks of the historical Artemision Naval Battle. 

It is our duty to promote the history of this land as well as the historical meaning of the unprecedented accomplishment of the first “marathon swimmers”. The Authentic Marathon Swim will attempt to attract the deserved exposure towards this matter by popularising the chronicled wealth of Artemision and Greece as a whole.

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