Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio.
country consisting principally of three groups of atolls in the WC Pacific, east of the Solomon Islands: formerly a British territory, it became independent & a member of the Commonwealth (1979): 277 sq mi (717 sq km); pop. 72,000; cap. Tarawa
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
An island country of the west-central Pacific Ocean near the equator. It includes the former Gilbert Islands, Banaba (Ocean Island), and the Phoenix and Line islands. Settled by Austronesian peoples before the 1st century A.D., the islands, together with the Ellice Islands, became a British protectorate (1892-1916) and subsequently a crown colony under the name the Gilbert and Ellice Island Colony. The Ellice Islands gained independence (1978) as Tuvalu and the remaining islands (1979) as Kiribati. Tarawa is the capital. Population: 108,000.