Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

archipelago

[ahr-kuh-pel-uh-goh]
See more synonyms for archipelago on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural ar·chi·pel·a·gos, ar·chi·pel·a·goes.
  1. a large group or chain of islands: the Malay Archipelago.
  2. any large body of water with many islands.
  3. the Archipelago, the Aegean Sea.
Show More

Origin of archipelago

1495–1505; alteration (archi- for arci-) of Italian arcipelago, alteration of Egeopelago the Aegean Sea < Greek Aigaîon pélagos
Related formsar·chi·pe·lag·ic [ahr-kuh-puh-laj-ik] /ˌɑr kə pəˈlædʒ ɪk/, ar·chi·pe·la·gi·an [ahr-kuh-puh-ley-jee-uh n, -juh n] /ˌɑr kə pəˈleɪ dʒi ən, -dʒən/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for archipelagic

Historical Examples

  • Here they were—the drift in the eddy of an archipelagic sea.

    The Quest for a Lost Race

    Thomas E. Pickett


British Dictionary definitions for archipelagic

archipelago

noun plural -gos or -goes
  1. a group of islands
  2. a sea studded with islands
Show More
Derived Formsarchipelagic (ˌɑːkɪpəˈlædʒɪk) or archipelagian (ˌɑːkɪpəˈleɪdʒɪən), adjective

Word Origin

C16 (meaning: the Aegean Sea): from Italian arcipelago, literally: the chief sea (perhaps originally a mistranslation of Greek Aigaion pelagos the Aegean Sea), from archi- + pelago sea, from Latin pelagus, from Greek pelagos
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for archipelagic

archipelago

n.

c.1500, from Italian arcipelago "the Aegean Sea" (13c.), from Greek arkhipelagos, from arkhi- "chief" (see archon) + pelagos "sea" (see pelagic). The Aegean Sea being full of island chains, the meaning was extended in Italian to "any sea studded with islands." Klein, noting the absence of arkhipelagos in ancient or Medieval Greek (the modern word in Greek is borrowed from Italian) believe it is an Italian mistake for Aigaion pelagos "Aegean Sea" (Medieval Latin Egeopelagus), or influenced by that name.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

archipelagic in Science

archipelago

[är′kə-pĕlə-gō′]
  1. A large group of islands.
  2. A sea, such as the Aegean, or an area in a sea containing a large number of scattered islands.
Show More
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

archipelagic in Culture

archipelago

[(ahr-kuh-pel-uh-goh)]

A group of islands near one another.

Show More
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.