Historia Naturalis Brasiliae

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Historia Naturalis Brasiliae
Cover of the first edition
Author Willem Piso
Country Netherlands
Language latin
Genre scientific
Publisher Joannes de Laet
Publication date
Media type Print
Pages 293 pp

Historia Naturalis Brasiliae (Latin: Brazilian Natural History), originally written in Latin, is the first scientific book about Brazil, written by Dutch naturalist Willem Piso and published in 1648.[1] Piso makes use of observations made by the German naturalists Georg Marcgrave, and H. Gralitzio, in addition to John de Laet. It was dedicated to John Maurice, Count of Nassau.

It is based on Piso's trip to Brazil in 1637 and offers an important early western insight into Brazilian flora and fauna by analysing plants and animals and studying tropical diseases and indigenous therapies.

It was edited, as stated on its cover, in Lugdun.[2] Batavorum: Apud Franciscum Hackium ; et Amstelodami:[3] Aud Lud. Elzevirium[4] - Latin name of the prestigious Elsevier publisher, which still exists.


  1. ^ Facsimile of original 1648 manuscript
  2. ^ "Lugdun." is the abbreviation for Lugdunum - the latin name of the Dutch city of Leiden
  3. ^ "Amstelodami" is the latin name for Amsterdam
  4. ^ Historia Naturalis Brasiliae - brasilian edition: Guilherme Piso (translation Prof. Alexandre Correia, followed by the original text, the author's biography and comments) (1948). Illustrated National History of Brasil (comemorative edition of the first 50 years of the Paulista Museum ed.). Companhia Editora Nacional. pp. 431 p.