The islands of what is now French Polynesia were first settled by Polynesian peoples in the 3rd century CE. France established a protectorate over Tahiti, the main island of the archipelago, in 1842. In 1889 the entire area was declared a French colony. The islands remain an overseas collectivity of France today but they enjoy a large internal autonomy. Because of its lush vegetation and Polynesian culture, Tahiti has become the archetypical exotic island.
Initial government is Despotism.