Definition: Archipelago

From New World Encyclopedia


From Italian arcipelago, formed on the basis of Ancient Greek ἀρχι- or arkhi- (main) + πέλαγος or pélagos (sea), a designation for the Aegean Sea. The Aegean Sea is a sea with many islands; the term Arcipelago, originally a proper noun referring to the Aegean Sea, was first generalized to a common noun for any sea with many islands, and then to the islands in such a sea.


archipelago (plural archipelagos or archipelagoes)

  1. A group of islands.
  2. Something scattered around like an archipelago.

Derived terms

  • archipelagic


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