The influence of the CO concentration in the gas phase on the distribution of carbon in Bridgman-grown, multicrystalline silicon is studied. The growth experiments were conducted in a high-vacuum induction furnace either under a CO enriched atmosphere or under CO free conditions. Furthermore, thermodynamic calculations in the system silicon/oxygen/carbon were done. In crystal growth under a CO enriched atmosphere a SiC-containing layer is formed on the top surface of the melt in agreement with the calculated phase diagram. In this case, the level of substitutional carbon in the cystal was found to be almost constant, whereas the axial carbon concentration in crystals grown under CO free conditions increases monotonously according to Scheil's law.