Recent commentary on poetic imitation in the Renaissance has tended to emphasize competition, to value kinds of imitation that strive to surpass their models, and therefore to disregard or even deprecate modes of imitation that seem to consist of little more than respectful duplications. It has too readily assumed that imitative poets can only achieve originality by defying or somehow asserting their difference from their models. In the following essay I seek to challenge such assumptions by examining the practice of a major Renaissance poet who managed to assert his modern voice through imitatio while refusing to engage in competitive struggle. I do not mean to suggest that Renaissance poets were not given to competitive imitation. For purposes of subsequent contrast it is worth considering rapidly why emulation frequently did characterize the imitative practice of some of these poets.