Abstract. Devillers, P. & Devillers-Terschuren, J.- Review of the Epipactis phyllanthes, E. gracilis, E. persica group and of its representation in the submediterranean beech forests of Italy, Greece, France, Spain and Bulgaria [Natural. belges 80 (Orchid. 12) (1999): 283-285, 292-310]. A review of the Epipactis phyllanthes group is proposed. It is suggested that the group can be divided into three constellations. An Atlantic one contains only E. phyllanthes of the British Isles, Belgium, western France, northern Spain and probably Jutland. A Central European fluviatile ensemble comprises E. albensis, centered on the Elbe and Morava river basins, E. fibri of the lower Rhone and E. confusa of the southwestern Baltic. A montane Mediterranean and Black Sea complex, here referred to as oro-tethyan, combines the variable E. persica of western Asia, E. troodi of Cyprus, E. cretica of Crete, E. gracilis of the Helleno-Balkanic and Italic peninsulas and of Sardinia, and E. fagicola of the Pyrenees and Cantabrian system. E. persica may be the stem species of the entire group and retains a number of primitive characters. All the species occur in specialised, biologically extremely valuable habitats in generally small and highly vulnerable colonies.

Key-Words: Orchidaceae, genus Epipactis, Epipactis phyllanthes, Epipactis gracilis, Epipactis persica, Epipactis cretica, Epipactis troodi, Epipactis confusa, Epipactis albensis, Epipactis fibri, Epipactis fageticola, Italy, Greece, France, Spain, Bulgaria, Mont Pollino, Vermion Range, Pirin Range, oromediterranean beech forests, Moesian beech forests.