meerkat

[ meer-kat ]
/ ˈmɪər kæt /
|

noun

Origin of meerkat

Dutch: literally, monkey, apparently equivalent to meer (see mere2) + kat cat
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for meerkat

British Dictionary definitions for meerkat

meerkat

/ (ˈmɪəˌkæt) /

noun

any of several South African mongooses, esp Suricata suricatta (slender-tailed meerkat or suricate), which has a lemur-like face and four-toed feet

Word Origin for meerkat

C19: from Dutch: sea-cat
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 meerkat

meerkat


n.

late 15c., "monkey," from Dutch meerkat "monkey" (related to Old High German mericazza), apparently from meer "lake" + kat "cat." But cf. Hindi markat, Sanskrit markata "ape," which might serve as a source of a Teutonic folk-etymology, even though the word was in Germanic before any known direct contact with India. First applied to the small South African mammals in 1801.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper