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The Society Islands ( ) are a group of islands in the south Pacific Oceanmarker. They are politically part of French Polynesiamarker. The archipelago is generally believed to have been named by Captain James Cook in honor of the Royal Society, the sponsor of the first British scientific survey of the islands; however, Cook states in his journal that he called the islands Society "as they lay contiguous to one another".
Map of Society Islands
One of the islands.

The islands are divided, both geographically and administratively into two groups: The islands became a French protectorate in 1843 and a colony in 1880. They have a population of 227,807 inhabitants (as of August 2007 census). They cover a land area of .


  1. Horwitz, Tony. Oct. 2003, Blue Latitudes: Boldly Going Where Captain Cook Has Gone Before, Bloomsbury, ISBN 0-7475-6455-8

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