monkey

[ muhng-kee ]
/ ˈmʌŋ ki /

noun, plural mon·keys.

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 mock.

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Idioms for monkey

    a monkey on one's back, Slang.
    1. an addiction to a drug or drugs; narcotic dependency.
    2. an enduring and often vexing habit or urge.
    3. a burdensome problem, situation, or responsibility; personal affliction or hindrance.
    make a monkey out of, to cause to appear ridiculous; make a fool of.Also make a monkey of.

Origin of monkey

First recorded in 1520–30; origin uncertain; possibly from Low German; compare Middle Low German Moneke (name of son of Martin the Ape in the story of Reynard the Fox), equivalent to mone- (akin to obsolete French monne “she-ape,” Spanish, Portuguese mono “ape”) + -ke diminutive suffix

usage note for monkey

OTHER WORDS FROM monkey

mon·key·ish, adjectivemon·key·ish·ly, adverbmon·key·ish·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for monkey

British Dictionary definitions for monkey

monkey
/ (ˈmʌŋkɪ) /

noun

verb

(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 monkey

monkey

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.