Definition of anthropoid
- the howling anthropoids of the Hookworm Belt
- —H. L. Mencken
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With its suffix -oid, meaning "resembling", the word anthropoid means literally "resembling a human being". Anthropoid apes are so called because they resemble humans more closely than do other primates such as monkeys and lemurs. Some even spend a good deal of time walking on their hind legs. Anthropoids are, of course, highly intelligent (though maybe no more so than many monkeys), and some of them use sticks and stones as tools. (But if you call someone an anthropoid, you're probably not complimenting his intelligence.)
First Known Use: 1874See Words from the same year
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to lessen the seriousness or strength of
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