From 1965 to 1974 Matti Kuusi was editor-in-chief of the famous journal Proverbium and invited proverb scholars to contribute to this forum. During this period he began to keep a card index of literature references to proverb types and made his first experiment in the thematic classification of international proverb materials in the 1970s. This volume is a study of the development of this type system. Outi Lauhakangas attempts to show how her father\'s practical dream of a common international reference code came to be realised. The reader will find a list of some 700 global or almost global proverb motifs and can access the database via the website of The Finnish Literature Society.