Igloolik Island

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For other places with the same name, see Qikiqtaarjuk.
Igloolik Island
Sod House.jpg
Remnants of older Inuit sod houses in Igloolik Point
Location Foxe Basin
Coordinates 69°23′N 81°40′W / 69.383°N 81.667°W / 69.383; -81.667 (Igloolik Island)Coordinates: 69°23′N 81°40′W / 69.383°N 81.667°W / 69.383; -81.667 (Igloolik Island)
Archipelago Canadian Arctic Archipelago
Nunavut Nunavut
Region Qikiqtaaluk
Largest settlement Igloolik
Population 1,538
Ethnic groups Inuit
Additional information

Source: Atlas of Canada[1]

Official name Igloolik Island Archaeological Sites National Historic Site of Canada
Designated 1978

Igloolik Island is a small island in the Qikiqtaaluk Region of Nunavut, Canada. It is located in the Foxe Basin, very close to the Melville Peninsula (and to a lesser degree, Baffin Island), and it is often thought to be a part of the peninsula. It forms part of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.

The word Igloolik (Inuktitut: "there is an igloo here") comes from iglu (meaning: "house"/"building") and refers to the sod houses (qarmaq)[2] that were originally in the area.[3][4] Inuit and their ancestors have inhabited the island since 2000 BC. The archaeological sites on the island, which show a sequence up to 1000 AD, were designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1978.[5][6][7]

There is only one community on the island, also named Igloolik.


On the north of Igloolik Island at 69°24′37″N 081°30′06″W / 69.41028°N 81.50167°W / 69.41028; -81.50167 (Qikiqtaarjuk) is a peninsula called Qikiqtaarjuk (Inuktitut syllabics: ᕿᑭᖅᑖᕐᔪᒃ, English: little island).[8][9][10] About 400 – 500 years ago Qikiqtaarjuk was a separate island but due to isostatic rebound it became part of the main island.[8] Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (traditional knowledge) says that prior to that there was an even smaller island called Puqtuniq from which the waters receded forming Qikiqtaarjuk.[11] Qikiqtaarjuk is associated with several Inuit legends and stories and was the place from where Atanarjuat starts his run.[8][9][11]


  1. ^ Blacklead Island at the Atlas of Canada
  2. ^ Joe Kremmidjuar Testimony
  3. ^ Igloolik, Nunavut
  4. ^ Igloolik at the Qikiqtani Inuit Association
  5. ^ Igloolik Island Archaeological Sites National Historic Site of Canada. Canadian Register of Historic Places. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  6. ^ National Historic Sites Of Canada System Plan
  7. ^ National Historic Sites Of Canada System Plan map Archived 2006-05-29 at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ a b c Encounters on the Passage: Inuit Meet the Explorers by Dorothy Harley Eber
  9. ^ a b New Ways of Mapping: Using GPS Mapping Software to Plot Place Names and Trails in Igloolik (Nunavut) by Claudio Aporta
  10. ^ Notice of Proposed Changes to Official Place Names and the Designation of New Official Place Names Near Igloolik, Nunavut.
  11. ^ a b Interviewing Inuit Elders by Alexina Kublu