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Soemba(both: so͞om`bä), island (1990 pop. 444,777), 4,305 sq mi (11,150 sq km), Indonesia, one of the Lesser Sundas, in the Indian Ocean, S of Flores across Sumba Strait. The chief town and port is Waingapu. The island is noted for horse breeding. Formerly Sumba was known as Sandalwood Island because of its large exports (17th–19th cent.) of sandalwood. The island was first visited by Europeans in 1522 and passed to the direct control of the Dutch in 1866.
an island of the Lesser Sunda group in Indonesia. Area, 11,200 sq km. Population, 290,000 (1971).
Sumba’s southern and central regions have rugged low-mountain relief, with elevations reaching 1,225 m. The mountains are composed of volcanic and crystalline rocks, with overlying Neogene marls and limestones. The northern part of the island consists of an alluvial plain. Sumba has a rainy tropical climate, with annual precipitation ranging from 1,500 mm on the plain to 2,500 mm in the mountains. The dry season is from July through October. Secondary thin forests predominate, as well as savannas with some species of Australian flora. The mountains have evergreen forests. Copra is produced and coffee, tobacco, soybeans, and peanuts are grown. The chief city is Waingapu.