The obvious importance of this general bibliography is that is collates knowledge previously scattered. Theoretically it enables anyone to commence research on Belize, formerly British Honduras. Just a few years ago research on this small country was esoteric, to say the least. With the interlibrary services now available, any library that has this volume becomes a research library on Belize. This brings one to the broader observation that the work’s greatest significance derives not just from its intrinsic quality, which is excellent, but also from its position as a part of the World Bibliographical Series. If other volumes in the series are of commensurate quality, the set will allow most libraries to become serious reference centers on the Third World. A series-volume is projected for every nation now recognized.

Note well that the volume under review includes not just historical publications, but those on geography, economy, culture, and politics, and it identifies most periodicals that have a significant interest in Belize. Historians are well served by their colleague who edited the volume. Lee Woodward makes a special effort in his nine-page introduction to describe the historical corpus that is included. Also, history occupies the most space (twenty-one pages) of any of the thirty-eight different types of published material listed in the table of contents. Conversely, some of the shortest units, such as visual arts, have less than one page.

A drawback for the historian is that guidelines of the series prevented even a brief survey of archival materials. The works that provide such information are indeed listed in this volume, but the reader must still seek them out to glimpse the character of archival collections wherein the history of Belize is preserved. Likewise the historian will learn here almost nothing of the important journalism of nineteenth-century Belize, or of the fact that much of it has been preserved on microfilm (only two citations, # 644 and # 656, will shed light on these last points to the uninitiated reader). With that caveat, it must be said that this volume is a major contribution to the historiography of Belize. Annotations on individual items speak with consistent quality and professional authority.