New Heb'rides, a chain of islands in the Western Pacific, extending NNW. to SSB., and lying W. of Fiji and NE. of New Caledonia. There are in all some thirty islands (area, 5110 sq. m.), of which twenty are inhabited, the people, mostly of the Melanesian race, numbering about 70,000. There are active volcanoes, but the islands rest upon a coral foundation. The larger islands are Espiritu Santo (70 miles long by 40 wide), Mallicolo (56 by 20), Ambrym (22 by 17), Vate or Sandwich (30 by 15), Erromango (30 by 22), Tanna (18 by 10), and Aneityum (35 miles in circumference). All are wooded, and some lofty, reaching 3000 feet. The seas swarm with fish. The people are savage cannibals of a low type, decreasing in number, who speak a great number of dialects. The southern islanders (Erroinango to Aneityum) have been civilised by English and Scottish missionaries. This chain was discovered by the Portuguese Quiros in 1606, and was thoroughly explored by Cook in 1773. They are claimed by the British, though nothing is done to occupy them. The French have cast covetous eyes upon the group, but their attempts to annex it have encountered the strenuous opposition of the Australian colonies. Since 1863 many natives have been carried away to serve as labourers in Queensland, Fiji, and New Caledonia. See Dr J. Inglis' In the New Hebrides (1887).