This text re-examines the relationship of Hellenistic poetry to Archaic poetry. It demonstrates how Callimachus, Theocritus and Apollonius develop their primary narrators or main narrative voices - a central feature of their poetic manner - by exploiting and adapting models from a wide range of Archaic poets and genres, including Homer, Hesiod, the Homeric Hymns, Pindar, Sappho, Archaic iambos, and early elegy. It goes beyond previous work by bringing together a close study of the Hellenistic re-making of the poetic forms of the past with the first comprehensive examination of the primary narrators of the major poems and fragments of Archaic and Hellenistic poetry. Building on narratological approaches to literary texts, it explores the ways in which Archaic poets create their narrators and develop personas across their different works. It also shows that poets such as Pindar and Hesiod provided an invaluable narrative 'pattern-book' for Hellenistic poets to adapt and experiment with.