- Word History
|part of speech:
||a New England state on the Atlantic coast between Connecticut and Massachusetts. (abbr.: RI)
||Rhode Islander (n.)
The full name of Rhode Island
is "Rhode Island and Providence Plantations." In 1663, a group of island and mainland communities formed an English colony with that name. The colony probably took its name from Roodt Eylandt
, the Dutch words for "red island" chosen by Dutch explorer Adriaen Block in 1614. Almost one hundred years earlier, Italian explorer Giovanni Verrazano had named a coastal island "Rhodes Island," after the Mediterranean island, Rhodes.