AskDefine | Define archipelago

Dictionary Definition

archipelago n : a group of many islands in a large body of water [also: archipelagoes (pl)]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Etymology

From Greek archi + Latin pelago < Greek πέλαγος

Pronunciation

  • italbrac RP /ɑːkɪˈpɛləgəʊ/
  • italbrac US /ɑːrkəˈpɛləgoʊ/

Noun

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

Translations

Related terms

Extensive Definition

An archipelago () is a chain or cluster of islands. The word archipelago literally means "chief sea", from Greek arkhon (arkhi-) ("leader") and pelagos'' ("sea"). In antiquity, the Archipelago (Greek: Αρχιπέλαγος) was the proper name for the Aegean Sea and, later, usage shifted to refer to the Aegean Islands (since the sea is remarkable for its large number of islands). It is now used to generally refer to any island group or, sometimes, to a sea containing a large number of scattered islands like the Aegean Sea.

Types of archipelagos

Archipelagos are usually found in the open sea; less commonly, a large land mass may neighbor them, an example being Scotland which has more than 700 islands surrounding the mainland. Archipelagoes are often volcanic, forming along mid-ocean ridges or hotspots, but there are many other processes involved in their construction, including erosion, deposition, and land elevation.
The four largest modern states that are mainly archipelagos are Japan, the Philippines, the United Kingdom and Indonesia (the world's largest archipelagic state according to the CIA World Factbook) https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/id.html.
The largest archipelago in the world by size is in Northern Canada, the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, situated in the Arctic Ocean.
archipelago in Arabic: أرخبيل
archipelago in Aragonese: Archipielago
archipelago in Bashkir: Архипелаг
archipelago in Central Bicolano: Arkipelago
archipelago in Bosnian: Arhipelag
archipelago in Breton: Enezeg
archipelago in Bulgarian: Архипелаг
archipelago in Catalan: Arxipèlag
archipelago in Czech: Souostroví
archipelago in Danish: Arkipelag
archipelago in German: Archipel
archipelago in Estonian: Saarestik
archipelago in Modern Greek (1453-): Αρχιπέλαγος
archipelago in Spanish: Archipiélago
archipelago in Esperanto: Arkipelago
archipelago in Basque: Uhartedi
archipelago in French: Archipel
archipelago in Galician: Arquipélago
archipelago in Korean: 군도
archipelago in Croatian: Otočje
archipelago in Ido: Archipelago
archipelago in Indonesian: Kepulauan
archipelago in Icelandic: Eyjaklasi
archipelago in Italian: Arcipelago
archipelago in Hebrew: ארכיפלג
archipelago in Kashubian: Òstrowina
archipelago in Swahili (macrolanguage): Funguvisiwa
archipelago in Kurdish: Komgirav
archipelago in Latin: Archipelagus
archipelago in Latvian: Arhipelāgs
archipelago in Lithuanian: Salynas
archipelago in Lojban: plugri
archipelago in Macedonian: Архипелаг
archipelago in Dutch: Archipel
archipelago in Japanese: 列島
archipelago in Norwegian: Arkipelag
archipelago in Low German: Archipel
archipelago in Polish: Archipelag
archipelago in Portuguese: Arquipélago
archipelago in Russian: Архипелаг
archipelago in Sicilian: Arcipèlacu
archipelago in Simple English: Archipelago
archipelago in Slovak: Súostrovie
archipelago in Slovenian: Arhipelag
archipelago in Serbian: Архипелаг
archipelago in Serbo-Croatian: Arhipelag
archipelago in Finnish: Saaristo
archipelago in Swedish: Ögrupp
archipelago in Tagalog: Kapuluan
archipelago in Vietnamese: Quần đảo
archipelago in Ukrainian: Архіпелаг
archipelago in Urdu: مجموعہ الجزائر
archipelago in Venetian: Arcipełago
archipelago in Yiddish: ארכיפעלאג
archipelago in Zamboanga Chavacano: Arquipelago
archipelago in Chinese: 群島

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

ait, atoll, bar, cay, continental island, coral head, coral island, coral reef, holm, insularity, island, island group, islandology, isle, islet, key, oceanic island, reef, sandbank, sandbar
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