The Argonautica is a Greek epic poem written by Apollonius Rhodius in the 3rd century BC. The only surviving Hellenistic epic, the Argonautica tells the myth of the voyage of Jason and the Argonauts to retrieve the Golden Fleece from remote Colchis. The Argonautica was an adventure for the poet, one of the major scholars of the Alexandrian period - it was a bold experiment in re-writing Homeric epic in a way that would meet the demanding tastes of his contemporaries. According to some accounts, a hostile reception even led to his exile to Rhodes. The Argonautica is worth reading, even if it lacks the dramatic tension and sharp characterisation of Homer's two great epic poems.