Green’s Dictionary of Slang

monkey n.

also monky

1. a scamp, a rascal [now SE].

[UK]Jonson Every Man In his Humour III iii: ’Sblood, here’s a trick vied, and revied: why, you monkeys, you!
[UK]Dekker & Webster Northward Hoe II i: Sfoote ide faine see the witty Monky because thou sayest he’s a Poet.
[UK]Shakespeare Tempest III i: Thou liest, thou jesting monkey thou.
[UK]Middleton Anything for a Quiet Life II i: kna.: O, you sweet-breath’d Monkey. wife: Go hang, you are so boisterous.
[UK]R. Brome Covent-Garden Weeded I i: Away you Monkey.
[UK]H. Glapthorne Wit in a Constable IV i: What doe the Monkeys laugh at?
[UK]Mercurius Fumigosus 13 23–30 Aug. 120: Away with them mercinary Monkeys, pockey Pieces of mortality, that make a Trade of Lust, and a pastime of incontinencie [...] But hang them Powl-Catts.
[UK]Dorset ‘A Faithful Catalogue of our most Eminent Ninnies’ Works of Rochester, Roscommon, Dorset (1720) 34: I wonder he dares speak, for fear we jerk / His lazy Bones, and make the Monkey work.
[UK]M. Pix Beau Defeated IV ii: Monkey, the Girl has stolen ’em out of my Cabinet.
[UK]Swift letter viii 31 Oct. Journal to Stella (1901) 55: Well little monkeys mine, I must go write; and so good-night.
[UK]Cibber Non-Juror I i: I-gad, this love-sick Monkey had stole it for a private Play-thing.
[UK]Vanbrugh & Cibber Provoked Husband II i: A Plague on him. th’ Monkey has gin us the slip, I think.
[UK]Proceedings at Sessions (City of London) Apr. 14/1: He called him a Monkey, and whipt out a Poker he had under his Coat, and struck him.
[UK]W. Toldervy Hist. of the Two Orphans III 159: We are immmediately pestered with the impertinence and noise of every monkey there, and heaven knows, we have very many who deserve that denomination.
[Ire]J. O’Keeffe Tony Lumpkin in Town (1780) 14: The monkey was a macaroni; and those beaux [...] make as much use of a woman, as they do of a sword; they keep both merely for show.
[UK]Burns Address to the Deil in Works (1842) 5/1: The bleezin, curst, mischievous monkeys Delude his eyes.
[US]R. Waln Hermit in America on Visit to Phila. 61: A monkey — you are right.
[UK]J.J. Stafford Love’s Frailties I iii: I’ll scratch you, you impudent monkey, if you come near me.
[UK] ‘The Old Maid & Her Monkey’ Flash Chaunter 11: And tho’ resembling his brother Apes, [...] Was not unlike the Monkies of the day, / Who with Cigars do whiff their cares away.
[UK]Dickens Martin Chuzzlewit (1995) 643: You are not a-going to take this monkey of a boy, are you?
[UK]A. Mayhew Paved with Gold 103: It is not an unfrequent occurrence for the sport-loving gent to give the young monkey that peculiar allowance known as ‘more kicks than halfpence’.
[UK]H. Kingsley Hillyars and Burtons (1870) 96: Come here, you young monkey.
[UK]E. Greey Queen’s Sailors I 257: We know he was a foul-mouthed little monkey.
[UK]‘Walter’ My Secret Life (1966) I 86: Who, to look at you, would believe you were such a liar, such a young monkey?
[UK]E. Pugh Man of Straw 97: He’s a nasty, saucy monkey!
[Ire]L. Doyle Ballygullion (1927) 54: What the divil [...] are ye grinnin’ at, ye pair av monkeys?
[US]Day Book (Chicago) 23 Mar. 15/2: Carry gets tired of this munky sic bracing her every day.
[Ire]Joyce Ulysses 343: Little monkeys common as ditchwater. Someone ought to take them and give them a good hiding for themselves.
[UK]E. Waugh Vile Bodies 227: Regular little monkey he was, sir, red-headed ... a terrible one for cats.
[UK]‘Henry Green’ Loving (1978) 114: He’s a sweet child if he may be a bit of a monkey.
[US]W.P. McGivern Big Heat 72: Mike Langana [...] grinning at his daughter and her friend. ‘You monkeys,’ he said.
[UK]C. Wood Fill the Stage With Happy Hours (1967) Act IV: He was out all night with Audrey last night – the cheeky monkey.
[UK]P. Theroux Family Arsenal 142: What a pair of monkeys you look.
[US]C. Hiaasen Skin Tight 29: The little monkey wants to sue me.
[UK]M. Frayn Now You Know 85: Look at him, the daft monkey!

2. a practitioner or a worker.

(a) a playhouse girl or prostitute.

[UK] ‘Session of Ladies’ in Wilson Court Satires of the Restoration (1976) 205: There were monkeys in top-knots and owls in settee, / High jilts in sultana and bulkers in crepe.

(b) as used by artisans or manual labourers, a clerk.

[UK](ref. to 1870s) Eve. Post 26 Nov. 6/3: The London Monkeys have several special Sunday evening beats. From St Paul’s to Charing Cross is perhaps the most fashionable, and the noisiest.
[UK]J. Ware Passing Eng. of the Victorian Era.

(c) (US) a person who acts as, works as, or is responsible for something, usu. a workman; used in combs., e.g. bridge monkey, a bridge builder.

[US]G.D. Chase ‘Lists From Maine’ in DN IV i 3: road monkey, n. One who repairs logging roads.
[US]J. Conroy Disinherited 238: One after another the stack monkeys were laid off.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn) 34: bridge monkey A bridge builder or carpenter.
[UK]K. Sampson Powder 246: You’re an itinerary monkey, are you, now?

(d) (US) a chorus-girl or a taxi-dancer, a dancehall hostess who charges ten cents a dance to all-comers; thus monkey show

[US]P.G. Cressey Taxi-Dance Hall 35: Monkeys. Dancing girls, either chorus girls or taxi-dancers [...] Monkey-chaser – A man interested in a taxi-dancer or chorus girl [...] Monkey shows. – Burlesque shows having chorus girls.

(e) (US black) the leader of a band or orchestra [the on-stage cavorting or their monkey suit n.].

[US]R.S. Gold Jazz Lex. 207: monkey, n. [...] it was customary in most bands for the leader only to be dressed in a tuxedo.

(f) (US) one who washes dishes in a restaurant, café etc.

[US]J. Smiley Hash House Lingo 38: Monkey, dish washer.

(g) (US Und.) a prohibition agent.

[US]G. Milburn ‘Convicts’ Jargon’ in AS VI:6 440: monkey, n. A prohibition officer.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 140/1: Monkey. 1. (Near South and Central U.S.; prohibition era) A prohibition agent.

(h) (US prison) a correctional officer.

[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
[US]Other Side of the Wall: Prisoner’s Dict. July [Internet] Monkey: Correctional officer.

(i) (Aus.) a jockey.

[Aus]T. Peacock More You Bet 33: And Eric might also yell out, ‘The monkey’ are on!’ which refers to the jockeys having been ‘legged up’ onto their respective mounts.

3. an inanimate object.

(a) a small bustle [? the image of a baby monkey clinging to its mother’s back].

[UK]‘Thomas Brown’ Fudge Family in Paris Letter V 39: Where shall I begin with the endless delights / Of this Eden of milliners, monkies, and sights.
[UK]N&Q Ser. 7 VII 22 June 498: The monkey was a small ‘bustle’, which in the days of very short waists was worn just below the shoulder blades [F&H].

(b) (UK Und.) a padlock [ety. unknown; but note SE monkey, ‘applied to various machines and implements’ (OED)].

[UK]Vaux Vocab. of the Flash Lang.
[UK]Egan Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]Worcester Herald 26 Dec. 4/3: The monkeys, the locks.
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc.
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
[US](con. 1910s) D. Mackenzie Hell’s Kitchen 128: Most warehouses are protected on the outside by insurance ‘monkeys’ – that is, padlocks.
[Ire]Eve. Herald (Dublin) 9 Dec. 4/6: Other [underworld] terms include : — ‘Flatty’ (policeman), ‘peach’ (to give away), ‘Peter’ (safe), ‘monkey’ (padlock), ‘stick’ (jemmy), ‘van dragger’ (motor thief), ‘snow’ (cocaine), ‘madam’ (misleading conversation) ‘stir’ (prison).
[UK]Illus. Police News 12 Mar. 8/3: Sir Ernest Wild, the Recorder, learned that ‘peter’ and ‘monkey’ were slang for for ‘safe’ and ‘padlock’.
[UK]‘Charles Raven’ Und. Nights 183: He could knock ‘monkeys’ off doors like a schoolboy knocking apples off a tree, despite the fact that the makers guaranteed them burglar-proof.

(c) a flask, esp. as used to carry liquor on hunting expeditions [? backform. f. suck the monkey under suck v.1 ].

[UK]R.S. Surtees Handley Cross (1854) 270: Old ’un got his monkey full o’ brandy!
[UK]R.S. Surtees Mr Sponge’s Sporting Tour 327: Having cut himself some extremely substantial sandwiches, and filled his ‘monkey’ full of sherry.
[UK]R.S. Surtees Ask Mamma 295: ‘Let us see vot he has in his monkey,’ said Jack [...] ‘Sherry, I fear,’ said he, uncorking it.
[UK]G.A. Sala My Diary in America I 357: These civic warriors [...] were smoking or taking ‘a suck at the monkey’ (otherwise the whisky flask).
[US]H.E. Hamblen Yarn of Bucko Mate 219: He raved and cursed horribly in Spanish, and made frequent trips to the ‘monkey’ of pisco in the port-quarter boat.

(d) (Aus./N.Z.) a mortgage.

[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc.
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict. 180: ‘monkey with a long tail,’ a mortgage. — Legal.
[US]Letters by an Odd Boy 163: Why should my mortgage be a ‘monkey with a long tail?’.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 22 July 24/3: When the drought broke [... the] cow specialist, who had in many instances mortgaged his soul as well as the farm for cash to buy fodder, reckoned the time had come to begin working off the monkey.

4. in derog. senses.

(a) a general insult, esp. when used derog. since mid-19C by white people of a black or Asian person; also attrib.

C. Dibdin ‘Negro Duet’ in Songs 1 (1842) 82/2: The sun go down / [...] /The lazy monkey rest him. / Poor working neger tir’d to death.
[UK]B.H. Malkin (trans.) Adventures of Gil Blas (1822) II 125: If my mistress [...] is stark mad for such a monkey as this [...] there will be little mercy for her on male or female tongues.
[US]letter q. in Wiley Life of Billy Yank (1952) 110: The niggers down here are not worth 3 cents [...] I had to tell the youngest monkley (about 6 years old) to keep the flies off the table.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 5 May 4/8: [of Japanese] The Monkey-man belted the Russ in his lair, / In the fastnesses frozen of Asia / [...] / Since Bull with the Monkey-man bedded / A swagger baboon has come from Japan / To gaze at Ned’s knightings and kneelings.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Captain Von Esson’ in Roderick (1967–9) II 324: [of Japanese sailors] She sent them down for the Old Greek Church, with the whole of their monkey crews.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 8 Dec. 13/3: ‘I had not loved the Chow,’ she remarked, simply, in explanation, ‘loved I not yakker less,’ or words to that effect – and so to the loathly Mongol’s monkey-house.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 23 Mar. 11/6: [of a Japanese man] The monkey pig-faced brute / He was never nobbled nowhow.
[US]Van Vechten Nigger Heaven 280: Monkey land fo’ duh monkey-chasers.
[US]R. Chandler ‘Guns At Cyrano’s’ in Red Wind (1946) 234: ‘Funny guy,’ the albino snarled. ‘A wise monkey.’.
[US]W.R. Burnett High Sierra in Four Novels (1984) 384: Just as I was picking it up this monkey started blasting at me.
[US]J. Jones From Here to Eternity (1998) 662: Rough monkey. Come on, wake up, rough monkey.
[US]H. Selby Jr Last Exit to Brooklyn (1966) 229: They stood a few feet apart in the middle of the street calling each other black bastards and monkey motherfuckas.
[UK]B.S. Johnson All Bull 181: So I would wear denims like the other storemen, right? Right, monkey.
[US]J. Yount Trapper’s Last Shot (1974) 109: Black niggers in a white man’s college. Ha! [...] I ort to shoot them damned monkeys myself.
[SA]C. Hope Separate Development 27: The dregs is what they gotta employ on the buses. Bladdy monkeys straight from the bush.
[Aus]M.B. ‘Chopper’ Read Chopper From The Inside 149: What some of the little monkeys didn’t realise was that if things had gone wrong for my opponent a lot of the onlookers would have gone too.
[US]T. Fontana ‘God's Chillin’ Oz ser. 1 ep. 3 [TV script] One of these Muslim monkeys was trying to tell me that Jesus was a nigger.
[US]W. Ellis Crooked Little Vein 32: He was the Last White Cabbie in New York City [...] all the others were fucken monkeys who got off the fucken boat and the fucken city said welcome.
[UK]Sun. Times 19 Dec. 15/3: South Africa’s national police commissioner [...] has said, ‘A monkey [i.e. Indian] came all the way from London to have his wife murdered here’.
[US]G. Pelecanos (con. 1972) What It Was 192: ‘I don’t want no monkeys,’ said Fanella. ‘Don’t worry [...] they got white snatch down there too’.
[Aus] A. Prentice ‘The Break’ in Crime Factory: Hard Labour [ebook] His no-neck monkey mate would have chalnnelled his inner bouncer and it would have been on.
[UK]Guardian 12 June [Internet] His [Asian] wife said the children of the [white] family [...] called her sons and daughter ‘monkeys’.
[US]D. Winslow The Force [ebook] This is a pissing match between two sets of monkeys [...] your brown monkey and [...] your black monkey.

(b) (Aus./US, also monkey man) a Chinese person; a Mongolian; any East Asian person.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 24 Mar. 14/4: Knew a young fellow – progeny of Chow and Victorian girl – who never missed an opportunity of assuring his companions that he was ‘no Chow,’ preferring rather to be considered some mean white’s illegitimate than the legitimate son of a ‘monkey.’.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 8 Sept. 11/3: Austral-i-ans, your duty’s plain: / Begin politer methods now, / Don’t talk of ‘Monkey men’ again / And pull your forelock to the Chow .
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 17 Sept. 1/4: They’re singing the Five-Starred Flag to Chows / To Chows and the slinking Jap / [...] / The bribe of a monkey-man’s shivoo / Has lured them as a crimp.
[US]J. Lait Gangster Girl 11: If a ‘rap’ threatened, and this was a Federal offense, hard to square or beat, the ‘monkeys’ would be jettisoned without hesitation.
[US]A.J. Pollock Und. Speaks n.p.: Monkey, a Mongolian.
Albany Advteriser (WA) 14 Nov. 1/3: he said the united states should reject instantly any Japanese proposal for a compromise truce. High-up monkeymen know the handwriting is on the wall.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 140/1: Monkey. [...] 2. (Chiefly among smugglers of aliens) A Chinese, sometimes extended to include any Oriental.
[US]W. Diehl Sharky’s Machine 127: They’re pushin’ me around the bend, them gook monkeys.
[Aus]M.B. ‘Chopper’ Read How to Shoot Friends 112: Very few of them [i.e. right-wingers] haven’t ‘banged a monkey’ at some stage.

(c) (US black) a West Indian.

[US]D. Pinckney High Cotton (1993) 140: I would come to no good among the no accounts, burrheads, shines, smokes, charcoals, dinges, coons, monkeys, jungle bunnies, jigaboos, spagingy-spagades, moleskins, California rollers, Murphy dogs, and diamond switchers.

(d) (Aus./US) a Japanese person; also attrib.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 22 Sept. 14/2: The Thursday Island pearlers, who are just now having trouble with the Japanese divers, deserve all they get from the Monkey people.
[UK]M. Amis London Fields 380: Just how different from us, spiritually, humanly [...] are these fucking monkeys?

(e) (also chimpanzee) a thug, spec. one with no intelligence; also attrib.

[US]Jackson & Hellyer Vocab. Criminal Sl. 59: Monkey, [...] Sometimes used to signify a ‘boob’.
[US]S. Ornitz Haunch Paunch and Jowl 206: They’ll hire gunmen to fight their own gunmen. That’s the cheapest thing they got to sell, human abortions – what am I talking about? – monkey abortions.
[US]R. Chandler ‘Pearls Are a Nuisance’ in Spanish Blood (1946) 113: A guy can’t take hisself a drink without some smart monkey bumps his elbow.
[US]N. Algren Neon Wilderness (1986) 229: He must of thought some monkey on the deck was laughin’ at that crate he was wheeling.
[US]R. Chandler Long Good-Bye 65: I got a butler, two maids, a cook, a chauffeur, not counting the monkey that walks behind me.
[US]D.D. Eisenhower in Hughes Ordeal of Power n.p.: I simply will not have these monkeys telling us what we can and cannot do [R].
[UK]G.F. Newman Sir, You Bastard 169: Monkeys with big ideas.
[US]H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 13: Other prominent representatives of the animal kingdom in this category of insult include: [...] other primates, including ape, baboon, gorilla, and monkey.
[UK]I. Welsh Filth 322: I feel like a fuckin monkey Davie.
[UK]N. Barlay Hooky Gear 126: Endin up as a cutman for a chimpanzee like Mickey.

(f) (US black) a white person.

[US]D. Claerbaut Black Jargon in White America 72: monkey n. 1. a Caucasian; white person.
[US]A. Brooke Last Toke 159: Whatever else turned the background badge-toting monkey on.
[US]Hip-Hop Connection Jan.–Feb. 67: One for all of you civilised shaved monkeys.

5. a person, with no derog. overtones.

[US]H.H. Brackenridge Modern Chivalry (1857) III 117: I have heard even an accomplished lady, use the term monkey, speaking of an individual of the other sex.
Davy Crockett’s Almanack (1846) 33: In spite o’ old Spain, an all the monkies called monarchs in creation.
H.C. Bunner More Short Sixes 53: I’ll do something to that Penrhyn monkey that won’t be any young lady’s dancing-class, you bet your boots!
[US]Jackson & Hellyer Vocab. Criminal Sl. 59: Monkey, a man, used in the mildly indifferent sense of a stranger.
[US]Wash. Herald (DC) 7 Nov. 27/6: He was no kind of a man for funny business [...] but a simple straight sort of monkey.
[US]N. Algren Never Come Morning (1988) 21: The monkey crankin’ the gas is the old lady’s kid.
[US]N. Davis Rendezvous with Fear 15: Say, who was that tough-looking monkey?
[US]B. Schulberg On the Waterfront (1964) 13: He’s a tough monkey, Joey Doyle.
[UK]R.L. Pike Mute Witness (1997) 28: They’re all tough monkeys. Until they lose those precious ten pints.
[US]P. Conroy Great Santini (1977) 313: Ansley wouldn’t let that monkey in her pants even for a little peek.

6. (later use US black) ill temper, tetchiness; usu. as get one’s monkey up [? characteristics of the animal].

[UK] ‘There’s Nothing Like Pride About Me’ in Flash Casket 65: Vhile guving Lord Hoppy a call, / My vife’s monkey rose d’y see, / ’Cos I eat pickled eels at a stall, / For there’s nothing like pride about me.
[Ire] ‘Nothing Like Pride About Me’ Dublin Comic Songster 256: My wife’s monkey rose, d’ye see; / Cause I eat pickled heels at a stall.
[[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 3 July 3/3: Lewey’s monkey being aroused, he retorted on Joe, calling him a young thief.
[UK]Derby Day 36: If I hadn’t known you, Rous, on an’ off, going on ten yar, that speech of yourn would have riz my monkey considerable.
[UK]Sl. Dict.
[UK]C. Rook Hooligan Nights 12: A remark which [...] never fails to send the monkey of a Drury Lane boy a considerable way up the pole.
[UK]Sporting Times 11 Mar. 1/1: Mr. Swift MacNeill is very angry with the Government [...]. After all it is not hard to rouse the monkey of the honourable member.
[US]Z.N. Hurston Mules and Men (1995) 41: You drunk, Bennie Lee. You done drunk so much of dis ole coon dick till you full of monkies.

7. (also monk) £500, A$500 [ety. unknown].

‘Voltigeur’s Derby Day’ in Post and Paddock xvii: ‘Our Jim’ is ‘up’ triumphant [...] and he hopes to see Newmarket with a ‘monkey’ in his purse .
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Victoria (Melbourne) 17 Aug. 3/3: Lord Dudley, who seldom has more than one bet on the Derby, and never less than a ‘monkey,’ offered to take three ‘gorillas’ about Dundee, but was not accommodated in a lump, though he could easily have obtained it ‘in driblets’.
[UK]Derby Day 134: I’ll lay you two to one in ‘monkeys’.
[US]J. O’Connor Wanderings of a Vagabond 134: [of a UK racecourse] A thousand throats are stretched to their utmost, crying out their slang betting phrases of ‘monkies,’ ‘ponies,’ ‘tenners,’ ‘fivers,’ ‘one to three,’ ‘four to six,’ etc.
[UK]H. Smart Post to Finish I 147: All right, Sir Marmaduke, what shall it be? In monkeys or thousands?
[Aus]Dead Bird (Sydney) 28 Sept. 2/2: Mr Graham had to part up a ‘monkey’.
[UK]‘Dagonet’ ‘The Rondeau of the Knock ’ in Referee 20 Apr. 7: No more in monkeys now odds on he’ll lay / And make the ever grumbling fielder gay.
[UK]J. Astley Fifty Years (2nd edn) I vii: I mean the ‘merry monk,’ i.e., the collection of crisp bank-notes that constitute the adorable ‘monkey’ value £500 sterling. [Ibid.] 342: I felt pretty sure that I should have the opportunity of going double or quits for my bonny crisp ‘monkey’.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 23 Dec. 5/8: I’ll bet you anything you like, from a case of champagne to a monkey.
[UK]Harrington & LeBrunn [perf. Marie Lloyd] He knows a Good Thing When He Sees It [lyrics] One fine day a ‘monkey’ he put on Blue Boar.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 13 Jan. 24/1: Hunter River (N.S.W.) sculler Geo. Towns has challenged world’s champion Gaudaur for a ‘monkey’ a-side.
[UK]D. Cotsford Society Snapshots 38: He. Go To Ascot? [...] She. Do any good? He. Dropped a monkey.
[UK]‘Doss Chiderdoss’ ‘His Lincoln Form’ Sporting Times 12 Mar. 1/3: In his mind he sees signs of a ‘monkey’ or so / In each gee-gee he bungs down his chink on.
[Aus]Smith’s Wkly (Sydney) 7 June 9/6: Slang of Money [...] Specific sums are variously named. £500 is a ‘monkey’; £25 a: ‘pony’; £10, a ‘double finnup’; £5, a ‘single finnup’ (word probably a Yiddish form of the Geman ‘funf’) .
[Aus]G.H. Lawson Dict. of Aus. Words And Terms [Internet] MONKEY— [...] £50.
[UK](con. c.1900s) J.B. Booth London Town 295: ‘TIME – for a “monkey”!’ roared a score of friendly voices.
[UK]J.B. Booth Sporting Times 262: The jockey had sent away to have a ‘monkey’ on another horse in the race.
[UK]V. Davis Phenomena in Crime 221: ‘I can let you have a monkey.’ A monkey is £500.
[Aus]S.J. Baker in Sun. Herald (Sydney) 8 June 9/3: The underworld has an extensive vocabulary of financial terms. Among those recorded by Detective Doyle are: [...] ‘spot’ or ‘century,’ £100; ‘monkey,’ £500; ‘grand,’ £1,000.
[UK]J. Gosling Ghost Squad 190: ‘Monkey’ Franks was always betting in ‘monkeys’. (or £500).
[UK]R. Cook Crust on its Uppers 69: He pulled a vast wad of beehives — about a monkey — from an inner pocket.
[UK]G.F. Newman Sir, You Bastard 71: Comes to about a monkey’s worth of tom.
[UK]T. Blacker Fixx 99: Shift-the-sitting-tenant-bung-the-local-councillor-a-monkey-and clean-up-lark.
[Aus]Ozwords Oct. [Internet] A monkey is $500 (formerly £500).
[UK]C. Newland Scholar 21: ‘Dat TV’s a Nicam y’know. Fuck, dat’s a monkey at least!’ [...] [He] would just as soon give away rocks as give them five hundred pounds for the TV.
[Ire]P. Howard Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nightdress 47: Suppose he’s got to be worth a monkey each way.
[UK]Guardian.co.uk 28 Dec. [Internet] You can buy tokens up to the value of £250. Imagine that: half a monkey to spend on books!
[Aus]T. Peacock More You Bet 67: ‘$500’ is referred to as a ‘monkey’ (as was 500 pound), while ‘$1,000’ is a ‘gorilla’, or just plain ‘large’, as in ‘10 large’ for ‘$10,000’.

8. (Aus.) £50 [poss. an error].

[Aus]R.G. Barrett Boys from Binjiwunyawunya 305: Fivers and tenners, eh. Lady Godivas and bricks we used to call them [...] Twenty-five quid was a pony. And fifty quid was a monkey.

9. (Aus.) a sheep; also attrib.

[Aus]A.C. Grant Bush-Life in Queensland I 88: No one felt better pleased than he did to see the last lot of ‘monkeys,’ as the shearers usually denominated sheep, leave the head-station.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 15 Aug. 14/2: What scorn of the old ‘ten, twelve, two, and a quarter of beef, flour, and sugar, and tea’ that was served out on Monday mornings when the ‘drum’ was dumped down and the week’s monkey-shearing commenced!
[Aus]Brisbane Courier (Qld) 24 Nov. 7/7: Sheep are ‘monkeys’ [...] men employed to muster the sheep in pens are ‘musterers’ and ‘monkey-dodgers’.
[Aus]G.H. Lawson Dict. of Aus. Words And Terms [Internet] MONKIES – A bush term for sheep.
[Aus]Baker Aus. Lang. 66: Some more popular terms for sheep: woolly and monkey (a shepherd is known as a monkey dodger).
[Aus]N. Pulliam I Travelled a Lonely Land (1957) 236/1: monkey a sheep. monkey dodger – a sheep hand.
[Aus]G. Seal Lingo 161: sport for show or for display is from 18th-century cant, a dover was a favoured brand of knife while a monkey was a sheep.

10. the genitals.

(a) (Aus./US) the vagina [? punning abbr. monkey business n.].

[US] ‘Jeff Davis Dream’ in T.P. Lowry Stories the Soldiers Wouldn’t Tell (1994) 50: Reaching down [...] His fingers touched her monkey.
[US]Stag Party n.p.: He played with and tickled my monkey, which made me feel so good that I naturally took his whole cock in my hand and began to rub it up and down.
[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
[UK]Lustful Memoirs of a Young and Passionated Girl 39: He got on top of her then placed the head of his champion between the lips of her monkey.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
[US]Randolph & Wilson Down in the Holler 105: The word satchel is best avoided because it means the pudendum, also known as the pussy, twat, snatch, monkey, moosey, or twitchet.
[US]B. Jackson Get Your Ass in the Water (1974) 226: Cock is a crickly creature, / all covered with wool. / It look like a monkey and smell like a bear, / but I wish my peter was there.
[US]G.V. Higgins Digger’s Game (1981) 8: The monkey is the monkey, a cunt is a cunt.
[US]H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 255: Thomas E. Murray, who spent nearly five hundred hours recording language usage in [singles bars] in and around St. Louis, Missouri, in 1982, reported both ‘I’m a monkey tamer’ (used only by males to females) and the feminine counterpart ‘My monkey’s wild’ (American Speech, Spring 1985).
[UK]Roger’s Profanisaurus in Viz 87 Dec. n.p.: monkey n. Vagina. As in: ‘Does the monkey want a banana?’.
[US]UGK ‘Let Me See It’ [lyrics] Let that monkey hang, baby / Let me see it.

(b) (US campus) the penis.

[US]Eble Campus Sl. Apr. 5: jack – to masturbate [...] Syn.: spank the monkey.
[US]J. Lethem Motherless Brooklyn (2000) 87: Spank our monkeys, rough up our suspects, jerk off, Minna meant.

11. a gullible person.

(a) (US tramp) a member of the public, a non-tramp.

[US]V.W. Saul ‘Vocab. of Bums’ in AS IV:5 342: Monkey — One of the general public.

(b) (US Und.) a victim of a swindler, a dupe.

[UK]Variety 14 July 8/1: We clipped a couple of monkeys for their whole roll .
[US]Maines & Grant Wise-crack Dict. 11/1: Monkey – Chump.
[US]W. Winchell On Broadway 21 Oct. [synd. col.] If the monkey (sucker) ignores the suspicious move, he is ready for the cleaners.
[US]D. Pendleton Executioner (1973) 86: Those guys are going to make us look like monkeys.
[Aus]M.B. ‘Chopper’ Read Chopper From The Inside 104: Some multi-million dollar drug bosses arrested, charged and convicted were Freddy’s monkeys and they didn’t even know it.

12. in drug uses [abbr. monkey on one’s back n.].

(a) (drugs) any form of narcotics addiction, usu. of heroin, morphine; thus the withdrawal symptoms that attend a lack of the drug.

[US]B. Dai Opium Addiction in Chicago 201: Monkey. Addiction to drugs, as in ‘I have a monkey on my back’.
[US]W. Brown Monkey On My Back (1954) 193: The monkey’s got his claws in me bad. If I don’t get a shot soon, I’ll have the meemies.
[US]H. Whittington Forgive Me, Killer (2000) 65: I’m on it, I got the monkey, I got the itch.
[US]C. Cooper Jr Scene (1996) 167: Well, our monkey weighs just as much as yours, and it hurts just as much, and it takes the same stuff to get it off as it does yours.
[US]D. Goines Dopefiend (1991) 27: The insatiable monster known to all users as their personal monkey.
[US]D.E. Miller Bk of Jargon 343: monkey: A drug habit.
[US]T. Williams Crackhouse 54: All the crack is gone. The pipes are cool, and everyone is jittery. This situation – the monkey – is common. [Ibid.] 75: See, everybody’s so intense from this drug [crack] that there’s a psychological thing with the cloud that produces that – and that is their monkey, the fact that they want to see the cloud.
[UK]M. Manning Get Your Cock Out 34: The singer had tried to quit scores of times, but as soon as he got rid of one monkey a new one would take its place.

(b) (drugs) morphine.

[US]J.T. Dunigan Drug Abuse.
[US]S.N. Pradhan Drug Abuse.

(c) (US black/drugs) a drug addict (who is irredeemably ‘hooked’).

[US]H.E. Roberts Third Ear n.p.: monkey n. [...] 2. a drug addict unable to ‘kick the habit’.

(d) (drugs) a cigarette made from cocaine paste and tobacco.

[US]ONDCP Street Terms 15: Monkey — Cigarette made from cocaine paste and tobacco; drug dependency.

13. (US campus) ‘the other woman’, ‘the other man’, i.e. the individual with whom one’s partner is having an affair [such a person ‘climbs all over’ their partner].

[US]P. Munro Sl. U. 132: I’ve heard Mitch is cheating on me. When I find his monkey, I’m going to do her up.

In compounds

monkey-dodger (n.)

a sheep-station hand; thus monkey-dodging, mustering sheep.

[Aus]Brisbane Courier (Qld) 24 Nov. 7/7: Men employed to muster the sheep in pens are ‘musterers’ and ‘monkey-dodgers’.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 4 Oct. 16/2: ‘Monkey-dodging,’ as slang for mustering sheep, is seldom heard nowadays; it is said to have had its origin in the fact that the aborigines in the early days never called a sheep anything but a monkey – though what the aborigine knew about monkeys it is hard to say.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 6 Aug. 26/4: The cattle drover – employer and employee – despises the ‘monkey-dodger,’ as he calls the sheep-tailer. I saw a rattling good fight between two cattle-drovers, all because, as one of their mates said, ‘the cow has been drinking with a sheep-drover.’.
[Aus]Baker Aus. Lang. 66: Some more popular terms for sheep: woolly and monkey (a shepherd is known as a monkey dodger).
monkey dust (n.) [dust n. (5e)] (drugs)

1. phencyclidine.

[US]H. Feldman et al. Angel Dust 124: The large number of street names it has been accorded over the years: [...] monkey dust [...] ‘Monkey dust’ is a brown powder containing PCP tetracaine and lactose.
[US]ONDCP Street Terms 15: Monkey dust — PCP.

2. morphine.

‘Worksheet 9: Self study of drug abuse’ St Alban’s College [Internet] Opiates [...] morphine (M, morph, Miss Emma, monkey dust, etc.).
monkey house (n.)

1. (US) a psychiatric institution.

Frederick Daily News (MD) 2 Nov. n.p.: ‘I have been watching you, you miserable woman,’ shouted the excited specialist. ‘It is women like you who drive men to the monkey house.’.
[US](con. early 1950s) J. Peacock Valhalla 447: Maybe somebody go to Monkey House.

2. (US drugs) an opium den.

[US]J.E. Schmidt Narcotics Lingo and Lore.
monkey-juice (n.)

semen.

[UK]M. Manning Get Your Cock Out 107: The beaner and Strutter were also wanking furiously, covering the chicks down the front in a great shower of monkey-juice.
monkey man (n.)

1. (US black) a weak man, usu. one dominated by his wife or girlfriend.

[US]Ida Cox ‘Chicago Monkey Man Blues’ [lyrics] I’ve got a monkey man here, a monkey man over there / I’ve got a monkey man here, a monkey man over there / If monkey men were money, I’d be a Chicago millionaire.
[US]Charlie Jackson & Ma Rainey ‘Big Feeling Blues’ [lyrics] All these many years I’ve been pleadin’ for a man / How come I can’t get me a real monkey man.
[US]R. Fisher Walls Of Jericho 302: monkey-man ‘Cake-eater’.
[US](con. WWI) H. Odum Wings on My Feet 157: I walks round tellin’ her to get her a monkey man an’ make him strut his stuff.
[US]Robert Johnson ‘I’m A Steady Rollin’ Man’ [lyrics] You can’t give your sweet woman, everything she wants in one time / ooh hoo ooo, you can’t give your sweet woman, everything she wants in one time / Well, boys, she get ramblin’ in her brain, hmm mmm mmm, some monkey man on her mind.

2. (US black) rarely, a West Indian immigrant.

P. Oliver Meaning of the Blues 50: The ‘monkey men’ of the West indies.

3. (N.Z.) one who provides a mortgage [note Ware (1909): ‘Monkey on the house (Soc.). Expression current in Cambridgeshire. It means that the owner of the house has raised money on it. The natives also say, “A monkey on the land”, the word “monkey” being exactly equivalent to “mortgage”’].

[NZ]Fairburn in Bailey & Roth Shanties (1967) 158: The good times are over. The monkey-man has foreclosed [DNZE].
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 136: monkey man Bank manager who provides your mortgage and represents the monkey on your back. Mid C20.

4. (W.I.) a large, unintelligent man.

[UK]M. Thelwell Harder They Come 190: Monkey man [...] Is mus’ be him in the song ‘hugging up a big monkey man’.

5. see sense 4b above.

monkey meat (n.)

1. (orig. US milit.) canned corned beef.

[US] letter in K.F. Cowing Dear Folks at Home (1919) 148: Our ‘chow’ [...] consisted of bread and ‘monkey’ meat, as we call some canned meat that comes from Argentine.
[US](con. 1918) J.W. Thomason Fix Bayonets! 200: I don’t like monkey-meat.
[US]I. Franklyn Knights of the Cockpit 137: ‘Monkey meat – ? My heavens, you don’t mean to say, they give you poor boys monkey meat to eat?’ ‘Not exactly – ! You see, we call Canned Beef by that name.’.
[US]J.W. Bishop ‘American Army Speech’ in AS XXI:4 Dec. 244: Even the odious C and K rations are either given their full titles or referred to as C’s and K’s. I heard little approximating the goldfish and monkeymeat of the last war.

2. (drugs) a heavily intoxicated drug user.

[US]J.E. Schmidt Narcotics Lingo and Lore.
[US]Hardy & Cull Drug Lang. and Lore.
monkey rum (n.)

(US) West Indian rum.

[US]J. Daniels Tar Heels 255: Corn liquor and monkey rum (which in North Carolina was the distilled sirup of sorghum cane), were concoctions taken stoically with retching and running eyes, for the effect beyond the first fusel oil belch [DA].
monkey spanner (n.)

the penis.

[UK]M. Manning Get Your Cock Out 60: Battering all might hell out of their monkey spanners in appreciation of a lady’s charms.
monkey track (n.)

the scarred veins that are the product of and indicate heroin addiction.

[US]C. Cooper Jr Scene (1996) 9: You want some stuff so bad the veins are poppin [...] in your monkey tracks.
monkey wagon (n.)

(US) an estate car, a ‘family’ car.

[UK](con. 1968) P. Theroux My Secret Hist. (1990) 298: Did they have one of those depressing houses, and a monkey wagon in the driveway?
monkey work (n.)

(US) trickery, mischief.

[US]McClure’s Mag. X 541/2: Mind you, any monkey work’ll get you into more trouble [DA].
[US](con. late19C) F. Riesenberg Log of the Sea 57: ‘No monkey work, now,’ Gus warned.
[Ire]‘Flann O’Brien’ At Swim-Two-Birds 78: Tell us to get on our feet and no delay or monkey-work.
[Ire]‘Myles na gCopaleen’ Best of Myles (1968) 32: Be quick or you’re for it. No monkey work!
[Ire]‘Flann O’Brien’ Third Policeman (1974) 162: You thought there was magic in it, not to mention monkey-work of no mean order.

In phrases

feed one’s/the monkey (v.)

1. (drugs, also scratch one’s/the monkey) to maintain one’s addiction to narcotics.

[US]W. Brown Monkey On My Back (1954) 226: The pushing they were doing did not bring in enough to feed two monkeys.
[US]S. Morgan Homeboy 325: Gotta feed the monkey before he eats your bahakas up raw.
[US]Bentley & Corbett Prison Sl. 72: Scratch Your Monkey also Feed Your Monkey The daily ‘shooting’ of drugs to satisfy a person’s habit.

2. (US gay, also feed someone’s monkey) to have sexual intercourse with a woman.

[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular 80: feed somebody’s monkey (fr sl monkey = vulva) to go to bed with a woman.
get one’s monkey up (v.) (also have one’s monkey up)

to lose one’s temper, to get into a bad temper; thus my monkey’s up, I am very annoyed.

[UK]‘Paul Pry’ Oddities of London Life I 90: Young master’s ‘monkey’ vos up at that, and he said he’d be blowed if he’d sit on the same board vith a charity brat.
[UK]‘F.L.G.’ Swell’s Night Guide K3: Monkey Up Violent Passion.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 28 Feb. 3/2: Mrs Wright’s monkey was up and she went at me dreadful.
[UK]R.S. Surtees Ask Mamma 348: Monsieur’s monkey, however, was now up.
[UK]Wild Boys of London I 261/1: Sam was angry; to use his own expression, ‘his monkey was up’.
[UK]Five Years’ Penal Servitude 229: My monkey was up, and I felt savage.
[Aus]‘Rolf Boldrewood’ Robbery Under Arms (1922) 60: The mare, like some women when they get their monkey up, was clean out of her senses.
[UK]G.M. Fenn Sappers and Miners 123: Of course, a chap gets his monkey up a bit when it comes to a fight.
[UK]B. Mitford Aletta 238: You know what a violent beggar he is when his monkey is up.
[US]N.Y. Tribune 9 Dec. 5/1: [She] looks as if she could give you what for if she got her monkey up.
[Aus]‘Rolf Boldrewood’ In Bad Company 17: Paddy’s got his monkey up, and it’ll be bloody wars if you don’t clear.
[NZ]N.Z. Truth 30 Jan. 5/6: At this threat John the Jehu got his monkey up.
get someone’s monkey up (v.) (also have someone’s monkey up)

to annoy someone, to infuriate someone.

[UK]A. Harris Emigrant Family I 212: Don’ be jerran (afraid) man. Only you chaff him and you’ll have his monkey up in a minute.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 7 July 3/1: When you gets a cabman's monkey up, yer Wertchip knows vot the natteral consekence is - vy, he [...] vips off like vinkin .
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc. 63: MONKEY, spirit, or temper. ‘to get one’s monkey up,’ to rouse their passion.
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict. [as cit. 1859].
[UK](con. 1835–40) P. Herring Bold Bendigo 9: I was at the ropes watching you mill into him, Bendy [...] and you did it well enough when he got your monkey up.
get the monkeys (v.)

to have feelings of irritation.

[UK]T. Burke Limehouse Nights 63: I should think ’e would get the monkeys. Anyone’d git the monkeys wiv you talkin’ to ’em like that. Got no tack, you ain’t.
give someone the monkeys (v.)

to annoy, to distress.

[UK]F. Jennings Tramping with Tramps 144: I’m fair fed up [...] One of my busiest days, too, and I’m already working one girl short. Fair gives you the monkeys, don’t it?
monkey on one’s back (n.)

see separate entry.

riding the monkey

of a shopkeeper, e.g. a grocer, defrauding customers by affixing some form of hidden weight to one’s scales, thus giving short weight.

[UK]Times 21 Dec. 4/4: The defendant had a two ounce weight affixed to the bottom of his scales, and suspended by a wire through the counter. This mode of defrauding the poor is called by the trade ‘riding the monkey’.
[Aus]Independent (Launceston, Tas.) 11 Jan. 3/1: The law will operate unkindly, only upon that class of tradesmen, who, not having the fear of God before their, eyes, nor the welfare of the People, are not delicate in ‘Riding the Monkey,’ and so on.
[UK]Lloyd’s Wkly Newspaper 15 May 8/5: The complainant is a tradesman, who has several times been fined for cheating the poor, by ‘riding the monkey’ and other devices for giving false weights.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

monkey-ass(ed) (adj.) [ass n. (2)]

(US) a euph. for damned adj.

[US](con. 1949) J. Hurling Boomers 152: How the hell are you going to swing a maul — with your monkey-ass tail?
[US](con. 1968) W.E. Merritt Where the Rivers Ran Backward 218: Shee-it. We be sending those mofo cameras and those monkey-assed earphones.
J. Nikolai ‘More Lame than L.A.M.F.’ PUNK Mag. [Internet] This little monkey-assed putz acted as though he were the star attraction.
monkey board (n.)

the step on a bus on which the conductor stands.

[UK]Punch XXXVIII 186: I was on the monkey-board behind.
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
[UK]J. Greenwood Low-Life Deeps 162: He [...] glanced wearily over his shoulder in the direction of the monkey-board.
[UK]J. Greenwood Tag, Rag & Co. 23: The ill-paid and hard-worked drudges of the monkey-board [...] ’bus conductors are systematically victimised.
monkey business (n.)

see separate entry.

monkey cage (n.)

(Can./US Und.) a prison cell.

[US]A.J. Pollock Und. Speaks.
[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular 126: In the pokey [...] he is fit in (booked, mugged and sprayed with lice repellent) before thrown into a cell [bird (monkey) cage].
[Can]R. Caron Go-Boy! 301: Suddenly, I quit pacing the monkey cage.
monkey-chaser (n.)

1. (US) a man who frequents taxi-dances [sense 2d].

[US]Princeton Union (MN) 25 Apr. 4/1: ‘Mother’ Jones [...] characterized Theodore Roosevelt as a ‘hot-air monkey chaser’.
[US]P.G. Cressey Taxi-Dance Hall 35: Monkeys. Dancing girls, either chorus girls or taxi-dancers [...] Monkey-chaser – A man interested in a taxi-dancer or chorus girl [...] Monkey shows. – Burlesque shows having chorus girls.

2. (US black) a West Indian.

[US]Atlantic Monthly Feb. 182/1: I’ll be john-browned if there’s a monkey-chaser in Harlem can gyp him.
[US]N. Van Patten ‘Vocab. of the Amer. Negro’ in AS VII:1 29: monkey-chaser. M. n. Negro from the British West Indies.
[US]Z.N. Hurston Dust Tracks On a Road (1995) 806: Two or three of the singers talked in stage whispers about ‘monkey chasers dancing.’ [...] The American Negroes have an unfortunate habit of speaking of West Indians as ‘monkey-chasers,’ pretending to believe that the West Indians catch monkeys and stew them with rice.
[US](con. 1940s) I. Freeman Out of the Burning (1961) 15: My family on both sides came from Trinidad. The Yankee Negroes called us monkey-chasers.
[US]I.L. Allen Lang. of Ethnic Conflict 49: monkey-chaser [1920s. Originally a West Indian].
[UK]P. Baker Blood Posse 102: Boat people. What’d you expect [...] Monkey chasers.

3. (US) a cocktail composed of gin and ice, with a little sugar and a trace of water.

[US]New Yorker 30 Aug. 15/3: Monkey chasers are gin and ice, with a little sugar and a trace of water. That term ‘monkey chaser’ comes from Georgia [OED].
monkey clothes (n.) [monkey suit n.]

1. (US) men’s dress or evening wear.

[US]DN II 399: Monkey clothes...Dress clothes, evening clothes.
R.P. Bond ‘Animal Comparisons’ in AS II:1 50: Monkey clothes — ‘Dress clothes’.
[US] in R.E. Howard ‘Cultured Cauliflowers’ in Gruber Boxing Stories (2005) 120: You done got me into these monkey clothes .

2. (US Und.) uniform or plain clothes, as worn by policemen.

[US]Hostetter & Beesley It’s a Racket! 232: monkey clothes — In plain clothes; out of uniform; said of detectives or police.
[US]D. Clemmer Prison Community (1940) 334/1: monkey clothes, n. A policeman’s uniform.
monkey dick (n.) [dick n.1 (5)] (US)

1. a frankfurter sausage.

[US] in IUFA Folk Speech n.p.: Army Terms: Monkey dicks (Hot dogs) [HDAS].
[US]Elting, Cragg & Deal Dict. of Soldier Talk 363: Monkey dicks (Generally World War II; Marines)...Vienna sausage.

2. a contemptible person.

[US]Cogan & Ferguson Presidio 86: He’s a monkey dick [HDAS].
monkey dust (n.) (also bath salts, cannibal dust, zombie dust)

(drugs) a designer drug of the cathinone group; a a stimulant, it interferes with dopamine and noradrenaline reuptakes; it allegedly produced psychotic reactions (hallucinations and paranoia) in its user .

[UK]Independent 11 Aug. [Internet] Police officers in the West Midlands are warning of a “public health crisis” over a new synthetic drug known as monkey dust that can be bought for as little as £2 [...] MDPV has already gained notoriety in America, where it was known as ‘bath salts’. Fears around the drug were sparked by a number of reported ‘cannibalism incidents’.
[UK]Times 11 Aug. [Internet] Also known as Zombie Dust, Cannibal Dust and bath salts, the drug stops users feeling pain and causes hallucinations, agitation and severe paranoia.
monkey-face (n.)

see separate entry.

monkey farting (n.)

(orig. Can.) playing around, ‘messing about’, wasting time.

[US](con. 1966) D.A. Willson REMF 40: Just a bunch of monkey-farting around and nonsense [HDAS].
Austin ‘Blue Water Blending’ University in Duluth, Minn. [Internet] This my mom, she works at a local grocery store. When she’s not working, she’s busy, as she says ‘monkey farting’ in her gardens.
monkey-fuck (v.)

to light one cigarette from the tip of another.

Online Sl. Dict. [Internet] monkey fuck v 1. to light a cigarette using a lit cigarette instead of a lighter. (‘I lost my matches, so I had to monkey fuck my cigarette.’).
monkey hat (n.)

(US) a hat worn by someone preparing food, as in a sandwich bar.

[US]J.D. MacDonald All These Condemned (2001) 182: You’ll find a nice clean counter and get behind it and put on a monkey hat and start making with the cheese on rye.
monkey iron (n.) [it is very tough to chew]

(W.I.) a sweetmeat made of coconut boiled with sugar.

[WI]cited in Cassidy & LePage Dict. Jam. Eng. (1980).
monkey jacket (n.) [predates monkey suit n.]

1. a short, close-fitting jacket, worn by either sex.

[UK]Sporting Mag. May VI 93/2: It is very well known, that the little great coats, or Spencers, as they are called by the men, have, with the women, the appellation of Monkeys.
[US]F.A. Olmsted Incidents of a Whaling Voyage 104: There are two kinds, the baboon jacket, a short coat without any skirts, and the monkey jacket, differing from the other in having a kind of ruffle around the lower edge answering to skirts.
[Aus]Satirist & Sporting Chron. (Sydney) 11 Mar. 3/2: Also, will be Sold [...] An old Cabbage Tree Hat and Monkey jacket.
‘Percival Plug’ Biscuits & Grog 10: I out my hands in the pocket of my monkey-jacket.
[US]G.G. Foster N.Y. by Gas-Light (1990) 176: The newest invention in the costume of the g’hal is a fascinating article of outside gear, termed by some a ‘polka,’ but generally known as a ‘monkey-jacket’.
[UK]Gloucester Citizen 27 Nov. 4/3: [advert] New Material and Style in [...] Monkey Jackets.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 15 Aug. 14/2: The struggle of the recipients to fix these [flowers] into a monkey-jacket button-hole a foot long, and the final deposit of them in the side pocket, alongside a fig of black tobacco, was also a cheery spectacle.
[US]G. Davis Recoll. Sea-Wanderer 307: Seeing her filling rapidly, I ordered the crew to take off their monkey-jackets, and, rolling them into a big wad, stopped the leak.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Brummy Usen’ in Roderick (1972) 77: The bushranger was [...] buried again in his dust and blood stains and monkey-jacket.
[US]‘Frederick Benton Williams’ (H.E. Hamblen) On Many Seas 82: I’ll go aft after breakfast and buy a couple of pairs of stockings and a monkey jacket from him.
[UK]‘Taffrail’ Pincher Martin 243: All wore ‘monkey-jackets’ – the ordinary eight-buttoned reefer coats.
[US]H. Brackbill ‘Midshipman Jargon’ in AS III:6 453: Monkey jacket — Full dress blouse.
[UK]M. Marshall Travels of Tramp-Royal 32: A swanky man in a kilt, monkey-jacket and blue bonnet.
[US](con. 1920s) Dos Passos Big Money in USA (1966) 824: The bellhops in monkeyjackets and the over-dressed old hens sitting in the lobby.
[US]C.R. Bond 26 Oct. in A Flying Tiger’s Diary (1984) 32: I dressed in our formal military ‘monkey jacket’ outfits.

2. (Aus.) a topcoat.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 10 Feb. 18/3: Und my mate he vas a-speening it oop in the pooblic-howse; und I say, [...] ‘Vy you no puy a moonkey yacket? Ven you geds ouderside, und de nor’vester he blow, you vill den cry oudt, “Vy did not I puy a moonkey yacket?”’.
[Aus]Sydney Sportsman (Surry Hills, NSW) 5 June 1/5: ‘The chances are he’as got a life pertecter under that monkey jacket’ [...] I made out the glimmer of our broker’s topcoat.

3. a dinner jacket.

[UK]J. Symons Man Called Jones (1949) 10: He was wearing a dinner-jacket. ‘I could do without it myself, and without these damned monkey jackets too.’.
[US]R. Price Ladies’ Man (1985) 17: He wore a food-stained chest-high apron under a red monkey jacket.
monkey-lip (n.) (also monkey-shave)

(Aus.) a form of beard typically worn by puritans and evangelicals; thus monkey-shaven adj.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 10 Mar. 13/1: There is one thing to be said for the war, anyhow – it has killed the Kruger shave in Melbourne. The monkey lip is now regarded as the trade-mark of the factious disloyalist. A prominent ecclesiastic is the only man who holds out.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 4 Aug. 11/1: If any more denominations secede from the scheme, there will presently only remain a couple of monkey-shaven individuals grappling with their futile fad, and even they will likely quarrel over the final paragraphs of the report.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 10 Sept. 12/2: The Wesleyan monkey shave is a trade-mark. So is the Presbyterian grizzled beard.
monkey lotion (n.)

(W.I.) acid that is thrown on someone resulting in burns and disfiguration.

[WI]Francis-Jackson Official Dancehall Dict. 34: Monkey lotion acid, thrown on someone so as to cause burning and disfiguration.
monkey money (n.)

1. (US) any foreign currency.

[US]Irwin Amer. Tramp and Und. Sl. 131: Monkey Money.- [...] Any foreign currency, generally below the par of United States gold, and so considered as of small account.

2. (US tramp) tokens issued instead of cash to be used in a specific shop.

[US]Irwin Amer. Tramp and Und. Sl. 131: Monkey Money. – Script or tokens issued in lieu of cash for use in a company store or commissary.

3. (UK Und.) counterfeit coins.

[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).

4. (W.I.) a small, insignificant sum of money.

[WI]Francis-Jackson Official Dancehall Dict. 34: Monkey-money a small sum thought to be of no real value: u. me nuh have nuh use fi monkey-money.
monkey nut (n.)

(US drugs) a given measure of crack cocaine.

[US]UGK ‘Pocket Full of Stones’ [lyrics] Cause they knew I cut them twentys and them big fat monkey nuts.
monkey parade (n.) (also monkeys’ parade)

the evening promenade up and down a main thoroughfare by (Cockney) young people in search of flirtation.

[UK](ref. to 1870s) Eve. Post 26 Nov. 6/3: We find the Monkey’s Parade flourishing remarkably in the early seventies when the beauties of Bow and Poplar, all tricked out in their Sunday best, footed it bravely along the echoing pavement and back again till supper time.
[UK]Dundee Eve. Post 26 Nov. 6: They all dodge the Jet Autem, and sneak down the slade, / To appear arm-in-arm at the Monkey’s Parade.
[UK]G.R. Sims Off the Track in London 104: Mare Street is famous for its ‘Monkeys’ Parade.’ On Sunday evening it is packed from end to end with promenaders.
[UK]E. Pugh Harry The Cockney 149: Our favourite haunts were the various Monkey Parades of North London, particularly Kentish Town Road and Upper Street, Islington. [...] Our usual beat was from the undertaker’s shop at the corner of Prince of Wales’ Road to the other undertaker’s shop at the corner of Fortess Road.
monkey piss (n.) [piss n. (1)]

(US) weak beer or bad wine.

[US]N. De Mille Smack Man (1991) 97: Bring us three mugs of that monkey piss you call beer.
[Aus]J. Birmingham Tasmanian Babes Fiasco (1998) 209: ‘He’s brought [...] two big boxes of wine.’ ‘Monkey piss?’.
monkey root (v.) [var. on monkey-fuck ]

(Aus. prison) to light one cigarette from the tip of another.

[Aus]Tupper & Wortley Aus. Prison Sl. Gloss. [Internet] Monkey root. Passing a lighted cigarette around a group to light other cigarettes where matches are lacking.
monkey’s... (n.)

see also separate entries.

monkey’s allowance (n.)

a minimum of payment and a maximum of harsh treatment, usu. ‘translated’ as ‘more kicks than halfpence’.

[UK]Grose Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue n.p.: Monkey’s allowance, more kicks than halfpence.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK]‘Jon Bee’ Dict. of the Turf, the Ring, the Chase, etc.
[US]‘Jack Downing’ Andrew Jackson 107: They had given them monkey’s allowance, more kick’s than cents.
[UK]Marryat Peter Simple (1911) 10: When you get on board you’ll find monkey’s allowance – more kicks than half-pence.
[UK]Western Times 3 July 3/3: A struggle took place [...] in consequence of the vociferous conduct of one of the Tories [who] was passed from one to the other with the ‘monkey’s allowance of more cuffs than ha’pence’.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 24 May 2/7: His answer was monkey’s allowance — a kick and a blow.
[UK]A. Mayhew Paved with Gold 103: It is not an unfrequent occurence for the sport-loving gent to give the young monkey that peculiar allowance known as ‘more kicks than halfpence’.
[UK]John O’Groat Jrnl 25 Apr. 2/2: The women do all of the work and get none of the pay — in fact we are put on monkeys allowance: more kicks than half-pence.
[UK]Cheltenham Chron. 23 May 4/4: Time was in the past, when they had monkeys allowance, more kicks than halfpence: now we live in better times.
‘Gladstone! The Man of the People’ [broadsheet ballad] Monkeys allowance we seem to have got / No halfpence but plenty of kicks.
[UK]Northampton Mercury 19 Oct. 9/2: I know your partnership affairs of old. Monkey’s allowance; me all the kicks, you all the ha’pence.
[US]A.J. Boyd Shellback 369: The only effects are to make the skipper’s temper unbearable [...] and to procure for the boys what is known as ‘monkey’s allowance’ – more kicks that halfpence.
monkey shine

see separate entries.

monkey show (n.) (also monkey hop) [monkey suit n.]

(US) a taxi-dance or burlesque show.

[US]P.G. Cressey Taxi-Dance Hall 17: Monkey shows. – Burlesque shows having chorus girls [...] The first efforts of its clientele to provide a satisfactory name for the taxi-dance hall resulted in such descriptive phrases as ‘dime-a-dance-halls,’ ‘stag dance,’ and ‘monkey hops’.
monkey’s tail (n.)

(orig. naut.) a short crowbar.

[UK]Marryat Peter Simple (1911) 30: ‘Youngster, hand me that monkey’s tail.’ I saw nothing like a monkey’s tail but I was so frightened that I snatched up the first thing that I saw which was a very short bar of iron.
monkey stick (n.)

a malacca cane, as used by a dandy.

[US]R. Chandler Little Sister 118: An apparently sane man could walk up and down [...] with a Piccadilly stroll and a monkey stick in his hand.
monkey suit (n.)

see separate entry.

monkey’s wedding (n.)

(S.Afr.) a situation of alternating or simultaneous sunshine and rain [fig. use of monkey’s wedding (breakfast), a presumably chaotic occasion (used as such in parts of US), ? ult. synon. Port. casamento de rapôsa, a vixen’s wedding].

[SA]Cape Times 29 Nov. 16: The Peninsula had a ‘monkey’s wedding’ rainfall yesterday with the sun shining at intervals and rain falling intermittently [DSAE].
D. Rooke S.Afr. Twins 101: The clouds shifted and the sun peeped out. A fine silver rain still falling. ‘It’s a Monkey’s Wedding,’ cried Tiensie.
[UK]N&Q 123: In Sussex, when sunshine and rain come together, it is known as a ‘monkey’s wedding’.
[UK]J. Hobbs Thoughts in a Makeshift Mortuary 423: Monkey’s wedding: simultaneous rain and sunshine.
[UK]Guardian G2 29 Jan. 7: Do we have a word for [...] what you call it when it rains and the sun shines, at the same time (a ‘monkey’s wedding,’ in some parts).
monkey swill (n.)

US cheap liquor, strong liquor, manufactured during US Prohibition.

[US]A. Hardin ‘Volstead English’ in AS VII:2 87: Terms used for intoxicating liquor: Monkey swill.
monkey tie (n.)

(S.Afr.) an especially gaudy tie.

[UK]cited in Partridge DU (1949).
monkey tricks (n.)

see separate entry.

In phrases

like a monkey on a stick (adj.)

behaving in an eccentric, bizarre manner.

Baroness Orczy ‘The Regent’s Park Murder’ Old Man in the Corner [Internet] ‘Pardon me,’ he said, jumping up in his seat like a monkey on a stick, ‘there were not two men talking outside the Square gates.’.
‘George Orwell’ ‘As I Please’ Trib. (London) 7 Jan. [Internet] I saw in Picture Post some ‘stills’ of Beaverbrook delivering a speech and looking more like a monkey on a stick than you would think possible for anyone who was not doing it on purpose.
Gambling Forum Archive Jun. Digest [Internet] Plus he only plays in weak games. Once the game gets tough he runs like a monkey on a stick.
like a monkey with a tin tool (adj.)

impudent, cheeky, self-satisfied.

[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
make a monkey (out) of (v.)

1. (orig. US) to make a fool of, to make someone look stupid.

[US]Courier (Lincoln, NE) 10 Aug. 10/1: Kim tried to make a monkey out of Roach but it didn’t work.
[US]H. Blossom Checkers 177: When Mr. Barlow heard of it, ‘he made a monkey of himself.’ [...] He ranted and swore [etc.].
[US]C.R. Wooldridge Hands Up! 68: If you had adopted for yourself the motto, ‘Nothing ventured, nothing lost,’ you wouldn’t have made a monkey out of yourself.
[US]R. Lardner You Know Me Al (1984) 61: We made a monkey out of Dubuque, or whatever his name is.
[US]H.C. Witwer Fighting Blood 105: I could of went up to Yale and made a monkey out of the entire college!
[US](con. 1910s) J.T. Farrell Young Lonigan in Studs Lonigan (1936) 63: He got sore because Helen could make such a monkey out of him.
[US]R. Chandler Lady in the Lake (1952) 234: I can’t let you make a monkey out of me in my own territory.
[UK]K. Amis letter 1 Jan. in Leader (2000) 226: The documents are now proved to have been forged for a hoax to fool people and make monkeys of them.
[US]G. Marx letter 7 Feb. in Groucho Letters (1967) 224: You would have heard from me before now if I hadn’t been making monkeys out of Shakespeare and Shaw.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Nov. 2: make a monkey out of – to make someone appear foolish.
[UK]T. Blacker Fixx 170: Having made a monkey out of her lamebrain interviewer.
[UK]Observer 3 Oct. 25: Anti-Darwinism makes a monkey out of Kansas.
[UK]Indep. 4 May 5: She’s made a monkey out of the French system.

2. to destroy a theory.

[US]‘Ed Lacy’ Lead With Your Left (1958) 67: That made a monkey out of the robbery theory in Owens’ murder.
monkey on a gridiron (n.)

a cyclist.

[UK]J.W. Horsley Memoirs of a ‘Sky Pilot’ 254: The plainly modern ‘monkey on a gridiron’ for cyclist, [...] and perhaps ‘churcher’ for a threepenny bit appealed to me as a cleric.
monkeys to junkies (n.) [studying mankind, from its origins as apes to junkie n.]

(US campus) a course in anthropology.

[US]W. Safire What’s The Good Word? 300: More recent examples [of nicknames for courses] are astronomy’s ‘Stars for Studs,’ art’s ‘Nudes for Dudes,’ psychology’s ‘Nuts and Sluts,’ European civilization’s ‘Plato to NATO,’ anthropology’s ‘Monkeys to Junkies,’ and comparative religion’s ‘Gods for Clods’.
play the monkey (v.)

1. to play the fool.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 17 Dec. 15/1: Thare is grate risk in playing the monkey. It is possible for the monkey to be a very philosophikal cuss, but 2-thirds ov the world will keep both eyes on the monkey all the time, and lose sight of the philosophy.

2. to malfunction.

[UK]L.T.C. Rolt Sleep No More (1994) 3: It was while we were talking to Harry [...] that the bell wire started to play the monkey.
not my monkey, not my circus

(US campus) phr. indicating the speaker's disinterest .

[US]C. Eble (ed.) UNC-CH Campus Sl. Spring 2014 Fall 4: NOT MY MONKEY, NOT MY CIRCUS — none of my business: X: ‘Alex is cheating on his girlfriend’ Y: ‘Not my monkey, not my circus’ .
throw a (monkey) wrench into (the machinery) (v.)

(orig. US) to obstruct something deliberately, to go out of one’s way to wreck a plan or project; thus monkey-wrenching, this form of industrial sabotage, esp. performed by ecologists; monkey-wrencher, one who does this.

[US]N.Y. Times 3 Apr. SM5: All the Congressmen realize that these Exchanges are necessary for the business of the country, and I know there is not a man in the House but would hesitate to throw the monkey wrench into these great machines – machines that have taken forty or fifty years to build. But one of these fine days some one is going to throw that monkey wrench, for these Exchanges become mere gambling machines.
[US](con. 1900s) S. Lewis Elmer Gantry 48: He would knock the block off any sneering, sneaking, lying, beer-bloated bully who should dare [...] try to throw a monkey-wrench into the machinery.
[US]Allighan Romance of Talkies 38: The Talkies threw several kinds of monkey wrenches into the machinery of production [DA].
[US]E.S. Gardner ‘Leg Man’ in Ruhm Hard-Boiled Detective (1977) 212: I’m going to throw a lot of monkey wrenches in that machinery.
[US]F. Brown Fabulous Clipjoint (1949) 106: I guess I went off kind of half-cocked. I threw a monkey wrench in things.
[US]C. Loken Come Monday Morning 152: Let’s see he better figger it out again he din’t wanna let hisself get too excited maybe there was a monkey wrench in there somewhere.
[US] (ref. to 1917-18) H. Berry Make the Kaiser Dance 40: Those damn Senegalese, they threw a monkey wrench in our plans.
[UK]Indep. Rev. 20 Apr. 7: It could really throw a wrench in our plans if he got sick.
too much of the monkey (n.)

(Aus.) extreme, ‘asking too much’.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 15 Aug. 4/2: It is openly stated that several men whose names appear among the recently-created crowd of J’s.P., are employés of Wright, Heaton, and Co. Is this true? If so, isn’t it ‘a little too much of the monkey’ – too ‘steep’ a dose for the stomachs of the average elector?
where the monkey puts his/the nuts (n.) (also where the monkey gathers his nuts, ...put the pineapple, ...shoves his/its/the nuts, …stuck his nuts, ...tucks the nuts)

a euph. for the anus; usu. as a phr. of coarse dismissal, you can shove/put it/them where the monkey...; note extrapolation in cit. 1956.

[Aus]E. Dyson ‘On a Bender’ in Benno and Some of the Push 83: He swung the chair agin, ’n’ the Dago took her where the monkey tucks the nuts.
[UK]‘J.H. Ross’ Mint (1955) 142: ‘Put that where the monkey put the nuts,’ retorted Taffy.
[UK]B. Bennett ‘The Dampoor Express’ in Billy Bennett’s Third Budget 39: I shot him where the monkey used to gather all his nuts.
[UK](con. 1912) B. Marshall George Brown’s Schooldays 93: Oh, go and put your pater where the monkey put the nuts.
[Aus]T. Ronan Vision Splendid 303: You can wrap your thanks [...] round Fred Jason’s clothes and boots and jam the lot where the monkey put the pineapple.
[US]H. Ellison ‘Johnny Slice’s Stoolie’ in Deadly Streets (1983) 84: I told him to put it where he shit.
[UK]G.W. Target Teachers (1962) 188: You can stick them where the monkey stuck his nuts.
[US]Maledicta 1 (Summer) 14: He slips it [i.e. an act of betrayal] to you where the rhinoceros got the javelin, or where the monkey shoved the nuts, or where Moby Dick got the old harpoon.
[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 1327/1: late C.19–20.
[UK]A. Sillitoe Birthday 86: He gets a black look from the foreman and tells him to stuff the job where a monkey shoves its nuts.