It is my conviction that, beyond the disciplinary boundaries constructed by academia, literature has a rich and multifarious life in its readers. This essay is dedicated to Hilary Gatti who through her work on Bruno and Shakespeare knows all too well about such a wealth of readerly perspectives. My contribution aims to analyse the ways in which literary texts are used in Vasari's Lives and the purposes to which his citational practices are put. In what follows, I set out only some aspects of a broader realm of enquiry, one which would repay further investigation. The analysis offered here is restricted to the final edition of the Lives (the Giunta edition of 1568), but future work will need to draw comparisons with the first edition and with Vasari's other writings. Another issue that would merit further enquiry is, moreover, that of Vasari's 'sources', and in particular the forms of mediation — perhaps even ones linked to oral traditions — that enrich his text and his ways of utilizing poets. 1 Let us nonetheless attempt to provide a preliminary mapping of the topic.