Meaning of ISLAND in English


I. ˈīlənd noun

( -s )

Usage: often attributive

Etymology: alteration (influenced by English isle ) (I) of earlier iland, from Middle English, from Old English īgland; akin to Old Frisian eiland island, Old Norse eyland; all from a prehistoric North Germanic-West Germanic compound whose first constituent is represented by Old English īg, īeg island and whose second constituent is represented by Old English land; Old English īg, īeg island akin to Old English ēa river, Old High German ouwa land by water, meadow, aha river, Old Norse ey island, ā river, Gothic ahwa river, Latin aqua water — more at land


a. : a tract of land surrounded by water and smaller than a continent

b. dialect : a tract of land cut off on two or more sides by water : peninsula

2. : something resembling an island by its isolated, surrounded, or sequestered position: as


(1) : an elevated piece of land surrounded by swamp or alluvial land

thousands were marooned on islands of high ground — Time

(2) : a piece of woodland surrounded by flat open country

b. : islet 2c — compare island of reil


(1) : a small isolated space between lines in a fingerprint

(2) : a lanceolate interruption in a line on the palm held to be a sign in palmistry

when the line has an island in the center … it foretells some trouble — Alice D. Jennings


(1) : a showcase, counter, or platform standing apart and approachable on all sides

only fast turnover items can be placed on islands — Printers' Ink

double built-in cooking top in an island arrangement — American Builder Catalog Directory

(2) or island platform : a platform at a railway station that has tracks on each side of it


(1) : safety island

(2) : safety zone

f. : a superstructure (as the forecastle, bridge, or poop) on the deck of an aircraft carrier or other ship

3. : a group or area isolated from its environment by specific characteristics or conditions: as

a. : an isolated ethnological group

the Hungarian colony … is a picturesque racial island — American Guide Series: Michigan

there are many cultural islands in the United States — David Riesman

b. : speech island

II. transitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

1. : to make into or as if into an island

a clear brown stream … islanding a purple and white rock with an amber pool — John Ruskin

2. : to dot with or as if with islands

a fair expanse of level pasture islanded with groves — William Wordsworth

groups of people islanded upon the dark grass — F.D.Ommanney

3. : to place on or as if on an island : isolate

the great mystery in whose midst we are islanded — Arthur Symons

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.