Share this entry

Share this page

archipelago

Line breaks: archi|pel¦ago
Pronunciation: /ˌɑːkɪˈpɛləɡəʊ
 
/

Definition of archipelago in English:

noun (plural archipelagos or archipelagoes)

1An extensive group of islands: the Indonesian archipelago
More example sentences
  • Within the country, a distinction is made between the capital of Nassau on New Providence Island and the out islands of the archipelago.
  • There are 13 main islands in the archipelago, plus four islets and some 40 outcrops of jagged rocks.
  • No, we live on a chain of islands, an archipelago, not a continent.
1.1A sea or stretch of water having many islands.
Example sentences
  • Their preferred habitat is the annual sea ice over the continental shelf and inter-island archipelagos that encircle the polar basin.
  • This is a fascinating archipelago at the southern end of the Red Sea.

Origin

early 16th century: from Italian arcipelago, from Greek arkhi- 'chief' + pelagos 'sea'. The word was originally used as a proper name (the Archipelago 'the Aegean Sea'): the general sense arose because the Aegean Sea is notable for its large numbers of islands.

Words that rhyme with archipelago

Bendigoindigo

Definition of archipelago in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day emulous
Pronunciation: ˈɛmjʊləs
adjective
seeking to emulate someone or something