• synonyms


[ muh-kak, -kahk ]
/ məˈkæk, -ˈkɑk /


any monkey of the genus Macaca, chiefly of Asia, characterized by cheek pouches and, usually, a short tail: several species are threatened or endangered.


All Of These Words Are Offensive (But Only Sometimes)English is confusing. And, many words have multiple meanings (and those meanings can be both good and bad), but as long as we're all trying to use these words in the kindest and best ways we can, that's all that matters.

Nearby words

macao, macapagal, macapagal arroyo, macapagal, diosdado, macapá, macaque, macarena, macaron, macaroni, macaroni cheese, macaroni wheat

Origin of macaque

1690–1700; < French < Portuguese macaco monkey. See macaco Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for macaque

British Dictionary definitions for macaque


/ (məˈkɑːk) /


any of various Old World monkeys of the genus Macaca, inhabiting wooded or rocky regions of Asia and Africa. Typically the tail is short or absent and cheek pouches are present

Word Origin for macaque

C17: from French, from Portuguese macaco, from Fiot (a W African language) makaku, from kaku 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

Word Origin and History for macaque



East Indian monkey, 1757, from French macaque, from Portuguese macaco "monkey," a Bantu word brought from Africa to Brazil (where it was applied 17c. to a type of monkey there). Introduced as a genus name 1840.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper