- a country in the South Pacific Ocean that consists of an island group southeast of Fiji; population 120,900 (est. 2009); capital, Nuku’alofa; languages, Tongan and English (both official). Also called the Friendly Islands.
The kingdom of Tonga consists of about 170 volcanic and coral islands, of which 36 are inhabited. Visited by the Dutch in the early 17th century, Tonga became a British protectorate in 1900 and an independent Commonwealth of Nations state in 1970. It has been a constitutional monarchy since 1875