Human papillomavirus (HPV) seroprevalence and determinants of seropositivity were assessed in a 10049-woman population-based cohort in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Serologic responses based on VLP-based ELISA were obtained from the plasma collected at study enrollment in 1993/1994 for HPV-16 (n=9949), HPV-18 (n=9928), HPV-31 (n=9932), and HPV-45 (n=3019). Seropositivity was defined as five standard deviations above the mean optical density obtained for studied virgins (n=573). HPV-16, -18, -31, and -45 seroprevalence was 15, 15, 16, and 11%, respectively. Of women DNA-positive for HPV-16, -18, -31, or -45, seropositivity was 45, 34, 51, and 28%, respectively. Peak HPV seroprevalence occurred a decade after DNA prevalence; lifetime number of sexual partners was the key determinant of seropositivity independent of DNA status and age. DNA- and sero-positive women showed the highest risk for concurrent CIN3/cancer, followed by DNA-positive, sero-negative women.