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Samar(sä`mär), island (1990 pop. 1,246,722), 5,050 sq mi (13,079 sq km), 3d largest of the Philippines, one of the Visayan Islands, NE of Leyte (from which it is separated by the narrow San Juanico Strait). It has commercial coconut and abaca plantations. There are important lumbering, fishing, and mining industries; iron ore is extracted. S Samar was devastated in 2013 by a typhoon, and E Samar was experienced significant destruction from another typhoon in 2014.
an island in the central Philippines. Area, 13,400 sq km (with adjacent small islands); population, 1 million (1970), mostly Bisayan.
The mountains on Samar, which have elevations of up to 896 m, are composed mainly of crystalline rocks, schists, and limestones. Along the shores are alluvial lowlands, and in the coastal zone, mainly the north, east, and south, are coral reefs. The climate is tropical monsoonal; annual precipitation is 2,500–3,500 mm. Typhoons are frequent from October to December. Ore deposits include iron at Hernani and copper at Ba-gacay. On the mountain slopes are humid evergreen tropical forests. There are coconut, abaca, and pineapple plantations and rice and corn fields. The Trans-Philippine Highway runs across Samar.