Supplementing the existing botanical, zoological, and anthropological perspectives, Alsemgeest and Bos add a book historical dimension to Historia Naturalis Brasiliae (HNB) research. Using a combination of tools from analytical bibliography and cultural history, conclusions can be made about the materiality and trajectory of individual copies of the HNB. Initially, a copy census was carefully set up and carried out, involving the cooperation of hundreds of institutional libraries worldwide. By sending out a questionnaire, the aim was to locate as many copies as possible, getting them confirmed either through autopsy or with the help of local experts, and to gather material evidence concerning the coloring, binding, and provenance. The result (this volume's Appendix) lists more than 300 surviving individual copies of the HNB, of which 14 copies are fully colored. Subsequently, the census functions as the base on which stories about the life cycle of selected copies are told. These stories are exemplary for how and why a copy was originally acquired or donated, used, collected, discarded, and institutionalized over time, and how it found different meaning in new constellations. The census provides insight into the HNB as an object of knowledge, prestige, heritage, or patrimonization. Finally, the authors are hopeful that the census will be used by scholars to question the HNB from completely new and fresh perspectives.