Rhianus (c.275–c.210 bc) A Cretan poet and Homeric scholar who was born a slave and worked as an attendant in a wrestling school. He was liberated, educated, and became a teacher. Of his poetry, only eleven epigrams and a couple of fragments of his Messenian epic have survived. He wrote the following lost works: an epic poem in fourteen books on Heracles; epics based on the history of Thessaly, Elis, Achaea; and most famously, an epic on the Second Messenian War in at least six books, centred on the story of aristomenes, which pausanias (3) used. The longest fragment, twenty-one lines in epic metre, may be an entire poem (it is an attack on the folly of mankind). Rhianus also produced an edition of the poems of homer: although it is lost, some forty-five references to it show his good sense. His works seem to have displayed much geographical knowledge. Rhianos seems to represent a reaction against the doctrine of callimachus (3) that a long poem was inartistic.