View synonyms for orangutan


[ aw-rang-oo-tan, oh-rang-, uh-rang- ]


  1. either of two species of long-armed, arboreal great ape, the only extant members of the subfamily Ponginae, inhabiting Borneo ( Pongo pygmaeus ) and Sumatra ( P. abelii ): both species, including all three of the Bornean subspecies, are endangered.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of orangutan1

First recorded in 1690–1700; from Dutch orang outang, apparently from Malay: literally, “forest man” ( Malay orang “man, person” + (h)utan “forest”

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Compare Meanings

How does orangutan compare to similar and commonly confused words? Explore the most common comparisons:

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Example Sentences

Someone had planted a modern human skull alongside an orangutan jaw with its teeth filed down.

Today, orangutans are found only on the islands of Sumatra and Borneo.

That same year, a court in Argentina reportedly ruled in a habeas corpus case that an orangutan named Sandra could be freed from a Buenos Aires zoo and moved to a sanctuary.

From Time

Last week, all seven of the orangutans at the National Zoo got their coronavirus shots, the zoo said.

In the early 1990s, Kinari Webb took a year off college to join a Harvard researcher studying orangutans in Indonesia’s rainforested Gunung Palung National Park.

Some dude slaps an orangutan around a little,” says Rick, “and they ask for $800,000,000.

But it is unlikely to make that transition itself, anymore than you could turn yourself into your neighbor, or an orangutan.

There was an orangutan sanctuary there, and I heard that they were taking volunteers.

The exhibit was intended as an example of the "missing link" between the orangutan and white man.

Sammy the orangutan has watched himself in Dunston Checks In, and he seemed to be interested.

Of the great man-like apes (gorilla, orangutan, and chimpanzee).

He leaped from left to right, and back again, like an orangutan stirred to frenzied anger.

Exactly a week after I had caught this interesting little animal, I succeeded in shooting a full-grown male Orangutan.

He looks as much like a Borneo Orangutan as any human being I ever saw.


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