a republic in the greater antilles in the west indies. Its capital is santo domingo. With haiti, it forms the island of hispaniola - the dominican republic occupying the eastern two thirds, and haiti, the western third. It was created in 1844 after a revolt against the rule of president boyer over the entire island of hispaniola, itself visited by columbus in 1492 and settled the next year. Except for a brief period of annexation to spain (1861-65), it has been independent, though closely associated with the united states. Its name comes from the spanish santo domingo, holy sunday, with reference to its discovery on a sunday.