Africa

[af-ri-kuh]
noun
1.
a continent S of Europe and between the Atlantic and Indian oceans. About 11,700,000 sq. mi. (30,303,000 sq. km).
adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
Africa (ˈæfrɪkə)
 
n
the second largest of the continents, on the Mediterranean in the north, the Atlantic in the west, and the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, and Indian Ocean in the east. The Sahara desert divides the continent unequally into North Africa (an early centre of civilization, in close contact with Europe and W Asia, now inhabited chiefly by Arabs) and Africa south of the Sahara (relatively isolated from the rest of the world until the 19th century and inhabited chiefly by Negroid peoples). It was colonized mainly in the 18th and 19th centuries by Europeans and now comprises independent nations. The largest lake is Lake Victoria and the chief rivers are the Nile, Niger, Congo, and Zambezi. Pop: 887 964 000 (2005 est). Area: about 30 300 000 sq km (11 700 000 sq miles)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

Africa
L. Africa (terra) "African land," fem. of Africus, from Afer "an African." Originally only in ref. to the region around Tunesia, it gradually was extended to the whole continent. Derivation from Arabic afar "dust, earth" is tempting, but the early date seems to argue against it. Africanas "Africans"
was in O.E.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

Africa definition


The second-largest continent, after Asia; located south of Europe and bordered to the west by the Atlantic Ocean and to the east by the Indian Ocean.

Note: Africa has been the home of great civilizations, particularly in Egypt, along the Mediterranean Sea. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, European nations colonized much of the continent (see colonialism). In the twentieth century, the colonies became independent countries.
Note: Africa south of the Sahara is sometimes called sub-Saharan Africa.
Note: Sub-Saharan Africa has been hit especially hard by HIV/AIDS, drastically decreasing the life expectancy of much of the population.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences for africa
Traces how couscous was taken to different countries from its origins in north
  africa.
Green in these cases represents the natural richness of africa.
Takes its name from its geographical location on the continent of africa.
It is completely migratory, and travels south in winter as far as subsaharan
  africa.
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