Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Moluccas (Dutch Molukken), or Spice Islands, are situate in the Malay archipelago, between Celebes and Papua, and extend from lat. 3° to 5° S. They consist of three groups - (1) Moluccas proper, containing the islands Fernate, Gilole, Batshian, Obi, Morti, and many islets; (2) Aniboyna (the seat of government), Ceram, Booroo, and several islets; (3) Banda islands. Nearly all the islands are mountainous, having peaks varying from 7,000 to 8,000 feet in height, mostly volcanic, and some of them active volcanoes; and the whole district is subject to earthquakes. There are in all several hundred islets, most of them small and uninhabited. The chief products and exports are cloves, nutmegs, sago, mace, edible birds'-nests, trepang, shark's fins, some gold, and bu-ds of paradise. The islands have been held in turn by Spain, Portugal, and Holland, and were held by England from 1796 to 1801, and from 1810 to 1814. The language spoken along the coasts is Malayan.