Definition of Antarctic in US English:



  • 1Relating to the south polar region or Antarctica.

    • ‘Such ideas naturally discouraged further exploration to the Antarctic region for many centuries to come.’
    • ‘There was still some cheese, dry biscuits, and dried apples in my pack from lunch a few days ago, as food rarely spoils in the cold Antarctic climate.’
    • ‘It recreates the vegetation and animal life in the Antarctic and Arctic regions.’
    • ‘Shackleton's last journey would be with the goal of circumnavigating the Antarctic continent.’
    • ‘I've just returned from spending a month at Palmer Station, a US research base on the Antarctic peninsular.’
    • ‘Ross was involved in eight Arctic and Antarctic expeditions after joining the navy in 1812.’
    • ‘The results, though, did not assess the overall contribution of the entire Antarctic ice sheet to sea level rise.’
    • ‘So much water is currently locked up in the Antarctic ice sheet that if it melted it would raise sea levels by a further 150 ft or more.’
    • ‘This reduced the mixing of warm, tropical ocean water and cold, polar water causing the buildup of the Antarctic polar ice cap.’
    • ‘The Antarctic region harbors the most extreme climate and the most narrow biodiversity of all continents.’
    • ‘You can almost feel the bitter cold and biting Antarctic wind in this excellent biography of a polar hero.’
    • ‘Arctic and Antarctic exploration remains a staple of the book publishing industry.’
    • ‘Amanda could, for example, be installed at any Antarctic site where the glacial ice is thick and free of dust.’
    • ‘The Northern Lights are a phenomenon that is seen in the skies on clear, dark nights in the Arctic and Antarctic regions.’
    • ‘The Emperor penguins are large and found only in the Antarctic regions.’
    • ‘He had wondered how Antarctic fish stay alive in waters cold enough to freeze them.’
    • ‘Their journey begins in early December at Hercules Inlet on the frozen Antarctic coast.’
    • ‘This is assuming that the Antarctic and Arctic ice caps will remain constant.’
    • ‘The Antarctic continent is colder for a number of reasons; topography being one of the most relevant.’
    • ‘During the Antarctic winter the South Pole becomes the coldest place on the planet.’
    1. 1.1Botany Relating to or denoting a phytogeographical kingdom comprising New Zealand, southern parts of Chile and Argentina, and islands in the South Atlantic and southern Indian Ocean.
      • ‘Lichens thus dominate the Antarctic flora both in terms of species diversity and in terms of total biomass.’
      • ‘The role of liverworts in Antarctic plant communities is discussed in detail.’
      • ‘The Antarctic flora is a distinct community of vascular plants which evolved millions of years ago.’
      southern, southerly, southwardly, meridional, polar
      View synonyms


the Antarctic
  • The Antarctic region.

    • ‘The two-part Channel 4 drama was filmed in Greenland instead of in the Antarctic which was in perpetual darkness at the time.’
    • ‘His film music included the film Scott of the Antarctic.’
    • ‘The Tom Crean Society has arrived at Buenos Aires en route to the Antarctic.’
    • ‘The lichen samples were collected along a transect from the northern maritime Antarctic to the continent.’
    • ‘This catch is in addition to the 400 minke whales caught by the Japanese fleet every year in the Antarctic.’
    • ‘The hardships they suffered instead for more than two years in the Antarctic have become the stuff of legend.’
    • ‘Ice shelves are carving off the Antarctic faster than expected.’
    • ‘Three volumes of a newspaper created on expeditions to the Antarctic led by Captain Scott are to be republished.’
    • ‘This guy is to ambition what the Antarctic is to ice cubes.’
    • ‘I ended the book with a photograph of an emperor penguin chick from the Antarctic.’
    • ‘To coincide with the International Polar Year, this year's theme is the Arctic and Antarctic, home of polar bears and penguins.’
    • ‘A Royal Navy Lynx helicopter operating from HMS Endurance has crashed in the Antarctic, injuring the flight crew of five.’
    • ‘More than 30 hours away from the UK already and we still had two days sailing before arriving at the true Antarctic.’
    • ‘There is relatively little information on trophic relationships among nearshore Antarctic peninsula organisms that inhabit the most productive areas in the Antarctic.’
    • ‘The work responded to the presence of classics in the Antarctic, in the place names given by British public school-educated explorers.’
    • ‘The name "Antarctic" tells the tale: The Falkland Current brings cold water north from the ocean around Antarctica.’
    • ‘That's one of the thoughts of how should poultry disease ever get to the Antarctic.’
    • ‘Cold rush threatens pristine Antarctic, says the Guardian's science correspondent Ian Sample (900 words; reading time 2-4 minutes).’
    • ‘It plummets to the icy surface of the Antarctic, burrowing deep within the ground.’
    • ‘Penguins are the most common birds in the Antarctic.’


Late Middle English: from Old French antartique or Latin antarcticus, from Greek antarktikos ‘opposite to the north’, from ant- ‘against’ + arktikos (see Arctic).