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The aim of this checklist of the flora of Brazil is to provide a functional and comprehensive list of all known Brazilian plants. The checklist comprises a total of 40.982 species, with 3.608 fungi, 3.495 algae, 1.521 bryophytes, 1.176 pteridophytes, 26 gymnosperms, and 31.156 angiosperms. [Editorial staff vifabio]
Carl Friedrich Philipp von Martius (1794-1868) was one of the most famous naturalists of the nineteenth century. From 1817 to 1821 he explored Brazil, with the zoologist Spix. During that period he collected more than 10,000 herbarium specimens that are now housed in the Botanische Staatssammlung, Muenchen, Germany. Importantly, von Martius' trip was the first to inspire academic interest in Brazil's rich flora. Martius quickly became an expert on palms and published three volumes of the Historia Naturalis Palmarum between 1823 and 1850. Additionally, he co-founded, with Endlicher, the magnificent Flora Brasiliensis, a monographical flora series. During his life time 46 fascicles were published, the remaining were completed later by Eichler and Urban in 1906 making a total of 130 volumes. Von Martius' private botanical collection grew, by purchase and exchange, to become one of the most important private herbaria of the nineteenth century. When he died, it contained ca. 300,000 specimens representing 65,000 species from all over the world. Approximately half of them came from the Amazon Basin. The Herbarium Martii was acquired by the Belgian government in 1870 and formed the beginning of a world collection for the then newly established Jardin botanique de l'Etat. The entire archive, with detailed lists for many of von Martius' acquisitions, is now conserved in the National Botanic Garden of Belgium. In this age of advancing technology it is possible to make species information and herbarium material more available to the academic community by placing it on the Internet. The project 'Prototype Image Server to Integrate the Martius' Herbarium and the Digital Flora Brasiliensis' aims to do just this. It represents an inter-institutional feasibility study within Work Package 13 of the European Network for Biodiversity Information. Initially this project focuses on eight pilot groups. From these groups, all historical type specimens of Brazilian taxa have been imaged and databased along with the texts and plates of the Flora Brasiliensis. Specimens, images, plates and texts are cross-linked and currently accessible on the Internet. ... [Information of the supplier]
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