1. Republic of, an island republic in the Pacific, near the equator, W of the Gilbert Islands: administered by Australia before 1968. 8¼ sq. mi. (21 sq. km).
Formerly Pleasant Island.
Related formsNa·u·ru·an, noun, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for nauruan


  1. of or relating to Nauru, its inhabitants, or their language
  1. a native or inhabitant of Nauru
  2. the Malayo-Polynesian language of Nauru


  1. an island republic in the SW Pacific, west of Kiribati: administered jointly by Australia, New Zealand, and Britain as a UN trust territory before becoming independent in 1968; a member of the Commonwealth (formerly a special member not represented at all meetings, until 1999). The economy is based on export of phosphates. Languages: Nauruan (a Malayo-Polynesian language) and English. Religion: Christian. Currency: Australian dollar. Capital: Yaren. Pop: 9 434 (2013 est). Area: 2130 hectares (5263 acres)Former name: Pleasant Island
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 nauruan


of unknown origin; formerly known as Pleasant Island (1798). Related: Nauruan (1921).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper