Polynesia (n.)

1758, Latinization of French polynésie, coined 1756 by French writer Charles de Brosses (1709-1777) in "Histoire des navigations aux terres australes, contenant ce que l'on sait des moeurs et des productions des contrées découvertes jusqu'à ce jour" (and first in English in a review of it), coined from Greek polys "many" (from PIE root *pele- (1) "to fill") + nesos "island" (see Chersonese). Related: Polynesian.

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