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monkey jacket

a short, close-fitting jacket or coat, formerly worn by sailors.
Origin of monkey jacket
First recorded in 1820-30; so called from its resemblance to a jacket worn by an organ-grinder's monkey Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for monkey jacket
Historical Examples
  • Captain Davy wore a monkey jacket; Mrs. Quiggin colored slightly.

  • At that I looked to the other side of the bowlder, and there was my friend of the monkey jacket.

  • I produced the roll of lint at once from the pocket of my monkey jacket.

    The Ghost Ship John C. Hutcheson
  • monkey jacket and buff vest, looking again at the paper—monkey jacket and buff vest, directing his eyes to Stewart.

  • Calamity paced up and down the bridge, grim and taciturn as ever, his hands buried in the pockets of his monkey jacket.

    Captain Calamity

    Rolf Bennett
British Dictionary definitions for monkey jacket

monkey jacket

a short close-fitting jacket, esp a waist-length jacket similar to a mess jacket
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for monkey jacket

monkey jacket

noun phrase

  1. Any tight, short jacket, esp one that is part of a uniform (1830+)
  2. A medical patient's gown (1970s+ Medical)

[fr the fact that monkey was a nautical term for anything small, in this case a short, informal jacket as distinct from a formal frock coat; monkey jackets are also the traditional garb of an organ grinder's monkey]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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