This chapter introduces protagonist, the Ragusan republic, outlining its international position and the importance of diplomacy for its survival. It reconstructs the development of topoi about diplomacy in Ragusan drama, poetry, and epics during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The chapter analyses the political tendentiousness of such discourses on diplomacy, that is, the ways in which they were used to legitimize the specific political goals of the Ragusan republic. Similar images were often followed by the glorification of the diplomatic skill of the Ragusan patriciate, which managed to ensure the survival and prosperity of the republic despite such dangerous neighbours. The sixteenth-century dramatist Marin Drzic, in a prologue to his play Tirena, wrote that the fame of the Ragusan patricians spreads all over the world, and that they are 'beloved' and 'cherished' by the lords of both east and west. He concluded his laudation with a suggestive metaphor: 'their ships sail on every wind'.