The Telchines, magical craftsmen and wizards, are best known for their criticism of Callimachus’ poetry in the prologue to the Aetia. The other two appearances of the Telchines are also in programmatic passages in Callimachus’ extant works. In the Hymn to Delos (30–3), the narrator asks an aporetic question about the theme of his song. There, the Telchines are the makers of the trident used to form every island but Delos, highlighting her singular status as uniquely created without force (30–3). In Aet. fr. 75, the Telchines appear in Xenomedes’ history of Ceos. There, Callimachus explicitly names one source for his material, but omits direct citation of equally important sources, namely Pindar and Bacchylides, while still alluding to their songs. This article examines verbal and thematic parallels among these three passages and argues that Callimachus uses the Telchines not only to link the passages but also to comment on his authorial process, his use of sources and his poetic programme.