Word of the Day – Archipelago

Word of the Day : May 7, 2021


noun ahr-kuh-PEL-uh-goh


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

Did you know?

The Greeks called it the Aegean Pelagos and the Italians referred to it as Arcipelago (meaning “chief sea”), but English speakers now call it the Aegean Sea. Numerous islands dot its expanse, and 16th-century English speakers adopted a modified form of its Italian name for any sea with a similar scattering of islands. In time, archipelago came to refer to the groups of islands themselves, and now it is often used figuratively, as in, for example, “an archipelago of high-rise buildings.”


“The Philippines, an archipelago of more than 7,100 islands, is recognized globally as a megadiverse nation and a biodiversity hotspot.” — The Carnegie Museum of Natural History, 30 Mar. 2021

“For those who have the choice, an island is a place to go to simplify life, to strip it bare of the constant attention-battering of our world. When Francis was writing he was not to know that, by the time of publication, isolation would have left its island home to push us two metres apart, to make us archipelagos.” — Philip Marsden, The Spectator, 3 Oct. 2020