Asked in
Arctic

Why is the Arctic called the Arctic?

Answer

User Avatar
Wiki User
March 17, 2017 1:32AM

According to an online etymology, the word "arctic" comes in late 14th century, artik, from O.Fr. artique, from M.L. articus, from L. arcticus, from Gk. arktikos "of the north," lit. "of the (constellation) Bear," from arktos"bear," the Bear being a northerly constellation. From the usual I.E. base for "bear" (cf. Avestan aresho, Armenian arj, Albanian ari, L. ursus, Welsharth); The -c- was restored 1550s.