Often at lectures and seminars we are told just how little is known about a far-away region on Earth. Such a remark is seldom printed in papers but is implied in bibliographies, which frequently contain very few references to the far place.

This is particularly the case for works on countries whose language differs from that of the author. This lack of reference to previous works may be due to the absence of related literature, or to the work's having been reported in local journals of restricted circulation, mostly written in the language of the country, or to the previous work's not being referred to in the bibliography although it was consulted. Not only am I concerned with giving proper credit to previous work, I want also to emphasize that in some instances, limited access to relevant local literature, including unpublished information, may be critical to doing good science.