I would like to thank J.-P. Beckmann, M. Biolzi, J. Bollmann, H. Hilbrecht, and K. von Salis Perch-Nielsen for their contribution to the Neptune project, and H.R. Thierstein for his continuous support to this project and years of encouragement. D.B. Lazarus, who initiated the project, designed and programmed the database, taught me much of what I know about ODP and biostratigraphy. Reviews and comments by H.R. Thierstein, J.A. McKenzie and two anonymous reviewers have greatly improved the manuscript. A special thanks goes to D.A. Spencer, who never ceased to remind me to write this work and for his constant support. Several other people have been involved in the taxonomic part of this project: J.-P. Caulet, J. Fenner, C. Nigrini, and C. Sancetta worked on preparing synonymy lists. C. Nigrini and A. Sanfilippo kindly provided their unpublished radiolarian range charts and revised Paleogene biozonations. A. Smith’s help and suggestions with the paleogeographic reconstruction is gratefully acknowledged. He kindly made available the unpublished program that was used for the paleoposition calculations. B. Brabec and K. Ragoonaden generously provided me with their computational expertise. A. Vit helped in the compilation of biostratigraphic files. M. Rakesh and the ODP Paleontological Archive staff made available the spreadsheet files of ODP range charts. The editors of Palaeontologia Electronica, Tim Patterson and Norm MacLeod, and three anonymous reviewers are gratefully acknowledged for their comments. Jennifer Rumford, PE’s technical editor, has been a great help in sorting out the challenge presented by the formatting the 200+ figures and tables. Finally, I would like to acknowledge my baby daughter, Francesca Louise Spencer, for patiently letting me spend long hours in front of the computer writing this synthesis when I was supposed to rest while expecting her. This work is dedicated to you and to your dad.