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From Latin insularis (of or belonging to an island), from insula (an island), perhaps, from in (in) + salum (the main sea).


insular (comparative more insular, superlative most insular)

  1. Of, pertaining to, being, or resembling an island or islands.
    • 1836, Washington Irving, Astoria, ch. 6:
      With these he held undisputed sway over his insular domains, and carried on intercourse with the chiefs or governors whom he had placed in command of the several islands.
  2. Situated on an island.
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick, ch. 1:
      There now is your insular city of the Manhattoes, belted round by wharves as Indian isles by coral reefs.
  3. Separate or isolated from the surroundings; having little interaction with external parties; provincial.
    • 1903, Jack London, Call of the Wild, ch. 1:
      [H]e had a fine pride in himself, was even a trifle egotistical, as country gentlemen sometimes become because of their insular situation.
  4. Having an inward-looking, standoffish, or withdrawn manner.
    • 1905, E. M. Forster, Where Angels Fear to Tread, ch. 6:
      Harriet was fretful and insular. Miss Abbott was pleasant, and insisted on praising everything.
  5. Relating to the insula in the brain.

Related terms[edit]



insular (plural insulars)

  1. An islander.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Berkeley to this entry?)

External links[edit]

  • insular at OneLook Dictionary Search




insular m, f (plural insulares)

  1. insular


insular m, f (plural insulares)

  1. islander

Related terms[edit]