A circumpolar star is a star that, as viewed from a given latitude on Earth, never sets below the horizon due to its apparent proximity to one of the celestial poles. Circumpolar stars are therefore visible from said location toward the nearest pole for the entire night on every night of the year (and would be continuously visible throughout the day too, were they not overwhelmed by the Sun's glare). Others are called seasonal stars.
All circumpolar stars lie within a circumpolar circle whose size is determined by the observer's latitude. Specifically, the angular measure of the radius of this circle equals the observer's latitude. The closer the observer is to the North or South Pole, the larger its circumpolar circle.
Before the definition of the Arctic was formalized as the region north of the Arctic Circle which experiences the Midnight sun, it more broadly meant those places where the 'bear' constellations (Ursa Major, the Great Bear, and Ursa Minor, the Little Bear) were high