Dictionary.com

donkey

[ dong-kee, dawng-, duhng- ]
/ ˈdɒŋ ki, ˈdɔŋ-, ˈdʌŋ- /
Save This Word!

noun, plural don·keys.
the domestic ass, Equus asinus.
(since 1874) a representation of this animal as the emblem of the U.S. Democratic Party.
a stupid, silly, or obstinate person.
a woodworking apparatus consisting of a clamping frame and saw, used for cutting marquetry veneers.
adjective
Machinery. auxiliary: donkey engine; donkey pump; donkey boiler.
QUIZ
QUIZ YOURSELF ON AFFECT VS. EFFECT!
In effect, this quiz will prove whether or not you have the skills to know the difference between “affect” and “effect.”
Question 1 of 7
The rainy weather could not ________ my elated spirits on my graduation day.
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of donkey

First recorded in 1775–85; of uncertain origin; perhaps alteration of Dunkey, diminutive name or pet form of Duncan, man's name; perhaps a derivative of dun “dull, grayish brown”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use donkey in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for donkey

donkey
/ (ˈdɒŋkɪ) /

noun
Also called: ass a long-eared domesticated member of the horse family (Equidae), descended from the African wild ass (Equus asinus)
a stupid or stubborn person
British slang, derogatory a footballer known for his or her lack of skillthe players are a bunch of overpriced and overrated donkeys
talk the hind leg(s) off a donkey to talk endlessly

Word Origin for donkey

C18: perhaps from dun dark + -key, as in monkey
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

Cultural definitions for donkey

donkey

A symbol (see also symbol) of the Democratic party, introduced in a series of political cartoons by Thomas Nast during the congressional elections of 1874. (Compare elephant.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK