Igloolik Island

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Igloolik Island
Sod House.jpg
Remnants of older Inuit sod houses in Igloolik Point
Igloolik Island is located in Nunavut
Igloolik Island
Igloolik Island
Location in Nunavut
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
Official name Igloolik Island Archaeological Sites National Historic Site of Canada
Designated 1978
Source: Atlas of Canada[1]

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]