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a large group or chain of islands:
the Malay Archipelago.
any large body of water with many islands.
the Archipelago, the Aegean Sea.
Historical Examples

Here they were—the drift in the eddy of an archipelagic sea.
The Quest for a Lost Race Thomas E. Pickett

noun (pl) -gos, -goes
a group of islands
a sea studded with islands

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.

A large group of islands.

A sea, such as the Aegean, or an area in a sea containing a large number of scattered islands.

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

A group of islands near one another.


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