noun plural

Pri·​ma·​tes prī-ˈmā-ˌtēz How to pronounce Primates (audio)
: an order of eutherian mammals including humans, apes, monkeys, lemurs, and living and extinct related forms that are all thought to be derived from generalized arboreal ancestors and that are in general characterized by increasing perfection of binocular vision, specialization of the appendages for grasping, and enlargement and differentiation of the brain

Dictionary Entries Near Primates

Cite this Entry

“Primates.” Medical Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on Primates

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!