Previous studies indicated that spring Arctic Oscillation (AO) can influence the following East Asian summer monsoon (EASM). This study reveals that the Atlantic multidecadal oscillation (AMO) has a pronounced modulation of the spring AO–EASM connection. Spring AO has a close relation with the EASM during the negative AMO (−AMO) phase. However, during the positive AMO (+AMO) phase, the spring AO–EASM connection is weak. During the −AMO phase, a marked dipole atmospheric anomaly pattern (with an anticyclonic anomaly over the midlatitudes and a cyclonic anomaly over the subtropics) and a pronounced tripole sea surface temperature (SST) anomaly pattern is formed in the North Pacific during positive spring AO years. The cyclonic anomaly, SST, and precipitation anomalies over the subtropical western North Pacific (WNP) maintain and propagate southwestward in the following summer via a positive air–sea feedback, which further impacts the EASM variation. During the +AMO phase, the Pacific center of the spring AO (i.e., the anticyclonic anomaly over the midlatitudes) is weak. As such, the cyclonic anomaly cannot be induced over the subtropical WNP by the spring AO via wave–mean flow interaction. Hence, the spring AO–EASM connection disappears during the +AMO phase. The AMO impacts the Pacific center of the spring AO via modulating the Aleutian low intensity and North Pacific storm track intensity. The observed AMO modulation of the spring AO–EASM connection and Pacific center of the spring AO can be captured by the long historical simulation in a coupled global climate model.

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