1. a general pej., the implication being of stupidity and lumbering size; thus apishness n.
|Miller’s Tale line 3389: Thus she maketh Absolon hir ape.|
|A Merry Play in Farmer Dramatic Writings (1905) 83: Now, by my troth, it is a pretty jape, / For a wife to make her husband her ape.|
|Jacke Juggler Di: There was neuer Ape so lyke unto Ape As he is to me.|
|Martin-Marprelate Tractes in Works I (1883–4) 165: But as the Ape, the more sagelie you looke on him, the more he grinneth; and the foole, the more substantiallie you reason with him, the lesse he vnderstandeth.|
|Mother Bombie II i: Weele bite thee for an ape if thou bob vs lyke asses.|
|Gul’s Horne-Booke 26: In an Ordinary you shall find the variety of a whole kingdome in a few Apes of the kingdome.|
|Fatal Dowry (1632) IV i: Let’s leaue the mad Ape.|
|Britain’s Remembrancer canto I 18: The scarlet-whore / Had with her charmed Cup of poisoned wine, / Transform’d them into Asses, Apes and swine.|
|Covent Garden II ii: Thou art a Baboone of formality, and an ape of court-ship.|
|Nights Search I 66: This lustful Ape, thinks he has got a prey.|
|Age for Apes 192: In ev’ry Country shop wee have them full. For you must know the Country’s no such Ape But it can City-fashions imitate.|
|Poor Robin’s Character of France 8: Then did he [...] thrust out his shoulders in such a ridiculous posture, that made my Worship to laugh heartily to see the Ape.|
|Love in the Dark I i: The Apes of chattering Frenchmen, that boast Of every Ladies favour they once saw.|
|A Character of London-Village 1: Where Fop and Flutter Each the Other Greets, Each Mimick Posture does an Ape present.|
|Maggots 124: Your heroick Lines had rendred [sic] your Ape-ship more rediculous then an Ass.|
|‘The Crafty Country Woman’ in Bagford Ballads (1878) I 35: [of a woman] But in a short time after, / this simple foolish Ape / Arrested her Husband, / And then she swore a Rape.|
|‘Song’ in Pills to Purge Melancholy II 42: And when they have done, they all return again / Like so many Apes, each with his Golden Chain.|
|Caleb Williams (1966) 157: With your apishness and absurdity however you have taught me one thing.|
|Life in Paris 218: Am I obliged to turn puppy [...] to be fit to sit or dance with a company of apes and demireps?|
|Mr Mathews’ Comic Annual 22: As to the stupid ape, her son Andrew, we can soon settle him.|
|Letter-bag of the Great Western (1873) 65: A colonial super-ultra-high-Tory, is of the genus blockhead, species ape.|
|Paul Pry 29 Jan. 3/1: Paul Advises [...] J—n L—r, of Pentonville, not to be seen dancing about the street with a parcel of apes, as big, fat, and foolish as himself.|
|Paul Pry (London) 15 Aug. n.p.: THE BRISTOL APE. [...] To be seen alive, a splendid specimen of the Ape. He has a small head, small eyes, and very little brains. This biped answers to thejjfiame of Jack SI— de, alias The Lushy Wheelwright.|
|Strange Adventures of Captain Dangerous 191: You wretched rebellious little Ape.|
|Dict. of Invective (1991) 19: [on R.W. Emerson] A gap-toothed and hoary-headed ape, carried at first into notice on the shoulder of Carlyle, and who now in his dotage spits and chatters from a dirtier perch of his own finding and fouling.letter 30 Jan. in H. Rawson|
|Salt Lake Trib. (UT) 5 Dec. 51/2: You little ape!|
|Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man 233: You flaming floundering fool! I’ll take my dying bible there isn’t a bigger bloody ape, do you know, than you in the whole flaming bloody world!|
|Marvel 17 July 7: Will you get off that gangway, you calm-faced ape?|
|Smith’s Wkly (Sydney) 11 Aug. 15/4: Presently we sights Em and the ape. They got two bottles of Oh My Dear.|
|Coll. Stories (1990) 155: The Kid’s mother is dying, you ape.‘Prison Mass’|
|Runyon on Broadway (1954) 562: You can boff this big ape.‘The Big Umbrella’|
|(con. 1900s) Drums Under the Windows 194: For one pin, you conceited, third-class ape, I’d knock you off the scaffold.|
|Riverslake 26: Go on, get out of the kitchen, you bloody ape!|
|Chips with Everything II x: Why do you want to pick on me, you lunatics, you bloody apes.|
|Gonif 125: Ired, when the hell are you going to learn that you can’t let every ape get your goat?|
|(con. c.1970) Short Timers (1985) 162: I’m ready to jump on your program, you fucking ape.|
|College Sl. Dict. [Internet] apes [CMU] fraternity brothers.|
|(con. 1920s) Legs 159: The big ape grabbed me by the shoulder [...] and growled, ‘You clumsy jerkoff, why don’t you look what you’re doing?’.|
|Nature Girl 20: They sent some Mexican ape from Security to [...] hustle me out of the building.|
|Viva La Madness 334: Fuck those bodyguards — paira apes ain’t getting shit.|
2. (orig. US, also apeman) a derog. term for a black person.
|‘Uncle Sam’s Peculiarities’ in Bentley’s Misc. 271: [addressing three negroes] D’ye think I’m going to turn my boat into a zoological institute, and have nothing but chattering scratching apes in her?|
|AS XIX:3 174: The DAE does not list such vulgar synonyms for Negro as ape.‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in|
|(con. 1940s) Sowers of the Wind 109: ‘What can we use, Andy?’ ‘Use?’ ‘Yes — to do the black apes over with. There’s six of them!’.|
|Scene (1996) 35: The ape who was sleeping with her [...] wouldn’t be one to let a mere hundred and seventeen dollars stand in the way of something this yellow bitch had her heart set on.|
|Balloons in Black Bag 90: If the Major calls him darky, sooty, [...] boogie, ape, jassbo, jigaboo, eightball, seal, jungle bunny, skunk or Zulu to his face, we’re going to be short of a valuable new comedy act.|
|Lang. of Ethnic Conflict 50: Animal Metaphors: ape [also baboon].|
|It (1987) 907: You nigger boogie night-fighter jungle-bunny apeman coon!|
|Lex. of Cadet Lang. 13: ape a black; a negro.|
|(T. Fontana) ‘Gray Matter’ Oz ser. 4 ep. 5 [TV script] You should have pulled those apes off me.|
|(con. 1973) Johnny Porno 125: The flip side is the ape they got ploughing her. Some gorilla they found inna jungle someplace.|
3. a thug, a hoodlum.
|Home to Harlem 53: Zeddy, the ape, who was scared of no man in the place, became humble before the woman.|
|High Sierra in Four Novels (1984) 288: ‘He reminds me of a cross between a farmer and a refined gorilla.’ [...] ‘Yeah [...] he’s a big ape all right.’.|
|Halo in Blood (1988) 180: You’ve got an ape called Ownie, who packs a sap.|
|Look Long Upon a Monkey 66: Not interested in the other apes, he told Stringy all that had to be said.|
|Murder Me for Nickels (2004) 67: One, two, three lump-muscled apes jumped out. Then two more [...] all lump-muscled and goonish.|
|Shaft 142: You two apes sitting in that saloon.|
|Under Cover 217: She was looking forward to a great night: getting all gussied up to turn the ape on.|
|Spidertown (1994) 91: Did’ju tell those apes you had eyeballin’ me t’ slash my tires?|
|Crumple Zone 105: What an ape. Eyeing you up. I think you’re in there.|
|Jimmy Bench-Press 48: He’s the ape at the table inside the corner window.|
4. (Aus.) £50; £500.
|Popular Dict. Aus. Sl.|
5. (S.Afr.) a white man.
|Born in the RSA (1997) 136: lennie. It’s the ou in the white BM you must watch man – white BM trouble you. boykie. BM trouble-you hey ... what do you chune if he stops? [...] lennie. You pull up your zip and you fuck off man ... HEY! APIE! boykie. Jussis, hy lyk soos apie.‘Score Me the Ages’|
a fool; a general term of abuse.
|(con. 1940s) Do Not Go Gentle (1962) 140: Calm down, ape ass, he told himself.|
(US) an ugly, thuggish person.
|Freaky Friday 58: You know I love being called Ape Face. It’s a real neat nickname.|
|Joe Bob Goes to the Drive-In 15: The tough guys in felt hats come back with this ape-face who looks like Yul Brynner in a Santa Claus suit.|
(orig. US) high, extra-long motorcycle handlebars, favoured by outlaw riders such as Hell’s Angels.
|Pop. Science 186 162: ‘Ape-hanger’ handlebars qualify you to ride with the wild ones.|
|New Yorker 11 Dec. 164: The swooping handlebars known among the motorcycle avant-garde as ape hangers.|
|Chopper Mag. Feb. 28/1: Straightening the pre-1948 bars out and bringing them back makes nice monkey-hangers.|
|Decadence and Other Plays (1985) 70: I’m a Harley Davidson with ape-hangers.East in|
|Different Seasons (1995) 192: Todd looked at it [...] holding the grips of his bike’s apehanger handlebars.|
|(con. 1970s) King Suckerman (1998) 100: He clutched the ape-hanger handlebars in the crucifix position.|
|Cycle World Jan. 66/2: The current setup—metalflake paint, apehangers, shotgun pipes, spool front hub, suicide clutch—seems like a keeper.|
|I Just Wanna Ride 34: He rides a Fat Boy with ape hangers and loud pipes that would make Captain America proud.|
(US) a fool, an idiot, thus adj. ape-headed, stupid.
|Reynolds’s Newspaper 24 July 1/1: This would not suit the plans of the ape-headed and tiger-hearted people.|
|Hillyars and Burtons (1870) 314: Ha! One single face left in all the world, and all the rest chattering ape-heads.|
|Reynolds’s Newspaper 24 July 1/4: The fat-sided, ape-headed boobies of princes whose laudation is a favourite topic.|
|Anderson Intelligencer (Anderson Court Hse, SC) 28 Aug. 1/6: These ape-headed pullets which invent [...] foot fangels merely for fashion’s sake.|
|Salt Lake Herald (UT) 13 Jan. 4/1: His words reflect the foul-mouthed ape-headed, rotten-hearted, moral, mental and social degenerate that he is.|
|Bottom Dogs 145: Well, ole Moose [...] wasn’t as hot on running that ape-head up on the bid.|
|‘More Tennessee Expressions’ in AS XVI:1 Feb. 446/2: ape oil. Liquor. ‘Salie’s man likes his ape oil.’.|
see dog in a doublet under dog n.2
(US) a derog. term for a black person.
|[||Son of Tarzan [ebook] Tarmangani, or great white ape, [...] described the white man [...] Gomangani—great black ape, or Negro—described none of them so they called themselves plain Mangani].|
|(con. 1920s) Studs Lonigan (1936) 213: For every white man killed in the riots, ten black apes ought to be massacred.Young Manhood in|
|Mr George’s Joint 337: Ah ain’t marry that black ape. Ah ain’t lak him.|
|Walk on the Water 333: Black ape! That’s what she was! Black ape! [...] That Filipina last night.|
|Sparhawk 191: I was in a very bad condition, what with that murdering black ape circling the table and ready to take my honor.|
|Negro Digest June 62/2: Well, nigger means just one thing to the white man: a black ape with rheumatism in the joint.|
|Modern Black Stories 5: Look at the black ape. That’s the worst of giving these Kaffirs enough rope.|
|(ref. to 1952)Warning: Writer at Work 54: What was perhaps less normal was the number of persons who cried, ‘Kill that black ape,’ and other racist exhortations.|
|(con. 1953)Hearts Echoes #3 173: Catherine [...] saw that a car driven by a Negro was tailgating. ‘I wish that black ape would stay back there. He’s way too close’.|
see under brush n.3
1. (Aus./US) a peasant.
|Elmtown’s Youth (1975) 81: The area below the canal [...] down by the garbage dump; where the river rats live; behind the tannery; the bush apes’ home; squatters’ paradise; where you’ll find the God-damned yellow hammers.|
|Elmtown’s Youth 162: His only friend is a ‘bush ape’ from east of town.|
|Slow Coming Dark 262: That yellow dog, ridge-running bush ape you married.|
2. (Aus.) a rural worker.
|Aus. Lang. 75: bush apes (rural or bush workers).|
3. (Aus.) an itinerant fruit-picker, usu. in Queensland.
|Aus. Lang. 75: bush apes ([...] fruit-pickers in South Australia).|
4. (Can./US) a logger.
|Brit. Columbia Lumberman 46 5: This concept of the ‘bush ape’ is kept alive by cartoonists, reporters and authors who either have no real knowledge of the ways of a logger.|
|Town Meeting Forestry 69: The logger has too long been described as a ‘bush ape’. [...] Because of the ‘bush ape’ stigma attached to logging labor, there is little prestige in the job.|
|Writing in the Rain 114: I’d seen a picture in The Glory Days of Logging of a toothless bush ape standing by a log dump.|
|Lumberjacks 82: A ‘bush ape’ [...] could lose up to 50 pounds in a couple of months at such work until he was mostly bone and muscle.|
(US) a rough, thuggish man.
|Never Come Morning (1988) 66: Who’s that cliff-ape?|
|Flight of the Intruder (2006) 192: Rucic would probably crucify him in the press, paint him as an insensitive cliff ape who didn’t care who he killed.|
|Under Siege [ebook] I’ve taken all the insults I’m going to off that cliff- ape.|
see like a blue-arsed baboon under baboon n.
(US black) an extremely unattractive and very dark-skinned person.
|Novels and Stories (1995) 1009: Park ape: an ugly, underprivileged Negro.‘Story in Harlem Sl.’ in|
|AS XXXII:4 277: park ape. An ugly, underprivileged Negro.‘Vernacular of the Jazz World’ in|
|High Cotton (1993) 26: A time [...] when blacks were wanted so desperately that any park ape who could manage long division was admitted.|
|Life Lessons 39: The Atlanta news executive who watched Harry warn a hotel clerk who had lost his kids’ room reservations not to make him jump across the desk and act like a ‘park ape’.|
1. a derog. term for a black person.
|Evergreen Rev. 12 26: Bring me red wine you hairy assed Rock Ape or I drink it from your throat!|
|Bulletin 17 June 4: The good relationships which these expatriates develop is too often counteracted by the Territorian [of P.N.G.] who refers to his workers as ‘rock apes’ or ‘kanakas’.|
|Australian 5 Feb. Mag. 1: ‘Coons, spiks, boongs, rock-apes, sunshines, I can’t stand them,’ he said. ‘Namatjira’s in the right place, six feet under.’ [GAW4].|
|Aus. Associated Press 23 June [Internet] A country doctor who was ordered to pay $4,000 in damages after calling an Aboriginal man who attended his surgery a ‘rock ape’ may be struck off the medical register.|
|Blackfellas, Whitefellas, and the Hidden Injuries of Race 70: The day after the Riot and he saw ‘rock ape’ written down beside his name as an alias on his charge sheet.|
2. anyone viewed with disfavour, e.g. a teenager.
|European 61-6 189: You rock ape, one of them always said, if I missed a trick.|
|GAW4].Walking the Dog 217: Who’s walking you home, not those rockapes, I trust? [|
|Age (Melbourne) 24 Apr. Life 3: Rock ape / rocky / knuckle dragger: A stupid crook [GAW4].|