Definition of Arctic in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈärktik/
Pronunciation: /ˈärdik/


1Relating to the regions around the North Pole: an Arctic explorer
More example sentences
  • Measurements from below the ice are only possible at the North Pole as the Arctic ice cap sits on the sea, unlike the Antarctic, which is a land mass.
  • Protected by the Alaskan peninsula from cold Arctic waters, the temperature of the ocean off of the Pacific coast varies remarkably little, both across the ecozone at any one time and over the year.
  • Studying this region will help researchers understand how much and in what ways Arctic glaciers and ice caps are contributing to sea level rise.
polar, far northern, boreal
literary hyperborean
1.1(Of animals or plants) living or growing in the regions around the North Pole.
Example sentences
  • Led by a Connecticut dentist, a research team says it has unraveled some of the mysteries surrounding the spiral horn grown by the small Arctic whale known as the narwhal.
  • The hares' main predators are gyr falcons, Arctic foxes and Arctic wolves.
  • Such changes directly impact the region's polar bears, since the Arctic predators hunt seals on the winter sea ice and must fast on land during the summer melt.
2 (arctic) informal (Of weather conditions) very cold.
Example sentences
  • Prone to sudden vicious weather and arctic conditions, Mt. McKinley is a serious mountaineering undertaking even on its easier routes.
  • The match kicked off in arctic conditions and the weather steadily got worse.
  • Unfortunately because of the arctic weather conditions the match had to be called off at half-time.
(bitterly) cold, wintry, freezing, frozen, icy, glacial, hypothermic, gelid, subzero, polar, Siberian, bone-chilling


1 (the Arctic) The regions around the North Pole.
2 (arctics /ˈärtiks/) North American Thick waterproof overshoes extending to the ankle or above.
Example sentences
  • In fact, the Arctics have kept my feet warmer than plastic double boots under similar conditions.
  • In the upper U.S. Midwest, school children know the black rubber, over-the-shoe boot as "four-buckle arctics".
  • Out of the saloon he went and met Sylvester West the druggist stumbling along in the kind of heavy overshoes called arctics.
3 (arctic) A drab-colored hairy butterfly of the arctic and subarctic regions of the New World.
  • Genus Oenis, subfamily Satyrinae, family Nymphalidae.


Late Middle English: via Old French from Latin arcticus, articus, from Greek arktikos, from arktos 'bear, Ursa Major, North Star'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: Arc·tic

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