The T4-type of bacteriophages is broadly defined on the basis of particle morphology. It occurs in enterobacteria (125 representatives), acinetobacters, aeromonads, pseudomonads, and vibrios (16 isolates). In addition, 18 apparently unrelated phages with prolate heads and contractile tails are found in a wide range of bacteria. A descriptive catalogue of these phages is presented. The T4-type probably originated in precursors of enterobacteria.