archipelago

noun ar·chi·pel·a·go \ ˌär-kə-ˈpe-lə-ˌgō , ˌär-chə- \
Updated on: 17 Nov 2017

Definition of archipelago

plural archipelagoes or archipelagos
1 :an expanse of water with many scattered islands
2 :a group of islands
3 :something resembling an archipelago; especially :a group or scattering of similar things
  • an archipelago of small parks within the city

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Recent Examples of archipelago from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'archipelago.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

The Greeks called it the Aegean Pelagos and the Italians referred to it as Arcipelago (principal sea), but English speakers now call it the Aegean Sea. Numerous islands dot its expanse, and 17th-century English speakers adopted a modified form of its Italian name for any sea with a similar scattering of islands. By the 19th century archipelago had come to refer to the groups of islands themselves, and now it is often used figuratively, as in, for example, "an archipelago of high rises."

Origin and Etymology of archipelago

Archipelago Aegean Sea, from Italian Arcipelago, literally, chief sea, from arci- (from Latin archi-) + Greek pelagos sea — more at plagal


ARCHIPELAGO Defined for English Language Learners

archipelago

noun

Definition of archipelago for English Language Learners

  • : a group of islands


ARCHIPELAGO Defined for Kids

archipelago

noun ar·chi·pel·a·go \ ˌär-kə-ˈpe-lə-ˌgō , ˌär-chə- \

Definition of archipelago for Students

plural archipelagoes or archipelagos
:a group of islands


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