a major division of the Pacific islands east of the 180th meridian, including Hawaii, Samoa, Tonga, the Society Islands, the Marquesas Islands, etc.
ModL < Gr poly-, poly- + nēsos, island + -ia
See Polynesia in American Heritage Dictionary 4
A division of Oceania including scattered islands of the central and southern Pacific Ocean roughly between New Zealand, Hawaii, and Easter Island. The larger islands are volcanic, the smaller ones generally coral formations.