[ muhng-kee ]
/ ˈmʌŋ ki /
noun, plural mon·keys.
any mammal of the order Primates, including the guenons, macaques, langurs, and capuchins, but excluding humans, the anthropoid apes, and, usually, the tarsier and prosimians.Compare New World monkey, Old World monkey.
the fur of certain species of such long-haired animals.
a person likened to such an animal, as a mischievous, agile child or a mimic.
a dance, deriving from the twist, in which the partners move their hands as if climbing a pole and jerk their heads back and forth.
Slang. an addiction to narcotics.
any of various mechanical devices, as the ram of a pile driver.
Coal Mining. a small passageway or opening.
British Slang. the sum of 500 pounds.
Australian Informal. a sheep.
verb (used without object), mon·keyed, mon·key·ing.
Informal. to play or trifle idly; fool (often followed by around or with).
verb (used with object), mon·keyed, mon·key·ing.
to imitate; ape; mimic.
TAKE ROUND 2 OF OUR PSAT VOCABULARY QUIZ!
Here is our second set of teacher-selected PSAT vocabulary words. Do you know the meanings of these terms?
Question 1 of 10
Idioms for monkey
- an addiction to a drug or drugs; narcotic dependency.
- an enduring and often vexing habit or urge.
- a burdensome problem, situation, or responsibility; personal affliction or hindrance.
a monkey on one's back, Slang.
make a monkey out of, to cause to appear ridiculous; make a fool of.Also make a monkey of.
Origin of monkey
1520–30; apparently < Low German; compare Middle Low German Moneke (name of son of Martin the Ape in the story of Reynard), equivalent to mone- (akin to obsolete French monne she-ape, Spanish, Portuguese mono ape) + -ke diminutive suffix
OTHER WORDS FROM monkeymon·key·ish, adjectivemon·key·ish·ly, adverbmon·key·ish·ness, noun
Words nearby monkey
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for make a monkey out of
/ (ˈmʌŋkɪ) /
any of numerous long-tailed primates excluding the prosimians (lemurs, tarsiers, etc): comprise the families Cercopithecidae (Old World monkeys), Cebidae (New World monkeys), and Callithricidae (marmosets)See Old World monkey, New World monkey Related adjective: simian
any primate except man
a naughty or mischievous person, esp a child
the head of a pile-driver (monkey engine) or of some similar mechanical device
(modifier) nautical denoting a small light structure or piece of equipment contrived to suit an immediate purposea monkey foresail; a monkey bridge
US and Canadian slang an addict's dependence on a drug
slang a butt of derision; someone made to look a fool (esp in the phrase make a monkey of)
slang (esp in bookmaking) £500
US and Canadian slang $500
Australian slang, archaic a sheep
give a monkey's British slang to care about or regard as importantwho gives a monkey's what he thinks?
have a monkey on one's back slang
- to be troubled by a persistent problem
- US and Canadian to be addicted to a drug
(intr; usually foll by around, with, etc) to meddle, fool, or tinker
(tr) rare to imitate; ape
Word Origin for monkey
C16: perhaps from Low German; compare Middle Low German Moneke name of the ape's son in the tale of Reynard the Fox
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
Idioms and Phrases with make a monkey out of (1 of 2)
make a monkey out of
see under make a fool of.
Idioms and Phrases with make a monkey out of (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with monkey
- monkey business
- monkey on one's back
- fool (monkey) around
- make a fool (monkey) of
- more fun than a barrel of monkeys
- throw a monkey wrench
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.