Ever since the late nineteenth century, scholars have hunted through the writings of the Byzantine Metropolitan of Athens, Michael Choniates (1138-ca. 1222), for fragments of Callimachus, approaching him as a source of quotations without considering his context in depth. This study examines the context and individual purpose of Choniates’ writings and explores his deep appreciation for Callimachus. It also argues that scholars need to approach his Callimacheanism with an eye to Choniates’ literary context, and consequently challenges reconstructions of Callimachus based on Choniates. It also posits that Choniates may have read Callimachus’ Iambi, and that other Byzantines, such as Choniates’ student George Bardanes, may also have been among the last readers of the text.
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