orangutan

[aw-rang-oo-tan, oh-rang-, uh-rang-]
noun
  1. a large, long-armed anthropoid ape, Pongo pygmaeus, of arboreal habits, inhabiting Borneo and Sumatra: an endangered species.
Also o·rang-u·tan, o·rang·u·tang, o·rang-ou·tang [aw-rang-oo-tang, oh-rang-, uh-rang-] /ɔˈræŋ ʊˌtæŋ, oʊˈræŋ-, əˈræŋ-/.

Origin of orangutan

1690–1700; < New Latin, Dutch orang outang, apparently < pidgin or bazaar Malay: literally, forest man (Malay orang man, person + (h)utan forest
Also called orang.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for orang-utan

Historical Examples of orang-utan


British Dictionary definitions for orang-utan

orang-utan

orang-utang (ɔːˌræŋuːˈtæŋ, ˌɔːræŋˈuːtæŋ)

noun
  1. a large anthropoid ape, Pongo pygmaeus, of the forests of Sumatra and Borneo, with shaggy reddish-brown hair and strong armsSometimes shortened to: orang

Word Origin for orang-utan

C17: from Malay orang hutan, from ōrang man + hūtan forest
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 orang-utan

orangutan

n.

1690s, from Dutch orang-outang (1631), from Malay orang utan, literally "man of the woods," from orang "man" + utan, hutan "forest, wild." It is possible that the word originally was used by town-dwellers on Java to describe savage forest tribes of the Sunda Islands and that Europeans misunderstood it to mean the ape. The name is not now applied in Malay to the animal, but there is evidence that it was used so in 17c. [OED]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper