Hey, Senior Citizens and other wanderers, let’s see if you know the difference …
There is no difference between an island and an isle and they can be used interchangeably. An island/isle is a large, isolated landmass1 that is surrounded by water but not as large as a continent2, according to the Wikipedia page, “Island”.3
A landmass can be called an island3 if it is above sea level, and on high tide, it should remain above water at any given time. It should also be capable of supporting plant and/or animal life through hard substrates4.5
The word “isle” is originally a French term. The term is included in the name of a specific place like the Isle of Wight and the Isle of Sheppey, both small islands of England.
An islet is a very small island. An example is Capitancillo Islet in Bogo City, Cebu, Philippines. Hope I can see it someday …
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1A landmass is a large area of continuous land (i.e., in one piece), mostly surrounded by water (not broken up by a body of water).
2A continental is a very large landmass1 of the world. Recall, Seniors, that there are 7 (largest to smallest): Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe and Australia, according to the Wikipedia page, “Continent”.6
3“Island,” accessed March 3, 2018, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Island.
4A substrate is a layer of substance that has something underneath it that goes through a process in which an organism can thrive and live.
6“Continent,” accessed March 3, 2018, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continent.