Louisiade Archipelago (lōēˌzēădˈ, –ädˈ) [key], SW Pacific, part of Papua New Guinea. The archipelago comprises c.10 volcanic islands and numerous coral reefs. The major islands are Tagula (the largest), Rossel, Misima, and Panaeati. The inhabitants are Papuans. Bwagaoia, on Misima island, is the chief village of the group. Most of the islands had gold reserves, but mining largely ceased after World War II. The archipelago was explored by the French navigator J. A. B. d'Entrecasteaux and was named in honor of the king of France.
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