ba·​boon ba-ˈbün How to pronounce baboon (audio)
 chiefly British  bə-
: any of a genus (Papio) of large gregarious primates of Africa and southwestern Asia having a long square naked muzzle
also : any of several closely related primates

Illustration of baboon

Illustration of baboon

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Pig-to-baboon organ transplants also have indicated another risky period, at 14 to 30 days after transplant, Dr. Montgomery said. Amy Dockser Marcus, WSJ, 27 Aug. 2022 This iconic primate is a close relative of the baboon, and can be found only in the Ethiopian Highlands, a spectacularly beautiful natural region located in the western portion of Ethiopia. Jared Ranahan, Forbes, 18 May 2022 For the baboon studies, Dr. Wasser used hormones from animal dung to help understand their reproductive successes or failures. Dean Paton, The Christian Science Monitor, 28 Apr. 2022 Her fraternal grandfather, Dr. Mark Boucek, was involved in the world’s first baboon-to-baby heart transplant. Matthew Vantryon, The Indianapolis Star, 13 Apr. 2022 At an upstate New York zoo in 2012, an olive baboon sat with her baby at a table opposite a mesh screen and a curious grad student who was holding some peanuts. Max G. Levy, Wired, 25 Jan. 2022 One baboon survived for three years with its brand new beating heart intact. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, 10 Mar. 2022 In 1984, a baboon heart was transplanted into Baby Fae, an infant with congenital heart defects. Rivka Galchen, The New Yorker, 21 Feb. 2022 Bennett’s pig heart raised ethical eyebrows because the procedure is highly risky—the longest-surviving previous recipient of a pig heart was a baboon who survived less than two months with the transplant. Jan Dutkiewicz, The New Republic, 20 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'baboon.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English babewin, from Middle French babouin, from baboue grimace

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of baboon was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near baboon

Cite this Entry

“Baboon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition



ba·​boon ba-ˈbün How to pronounce baboon (audio)
: any of several large African and Asian monkeys having long squarish muzzles and usually short tails

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