chimpanzee

noun

chim·​pan·​zee (ˌ)chim-ˌpan-ˈzē How to pronounce chimpanzee (audio)
-pən-ˈzē,
-ˈpan-zē How to pronounce chimpanzee (audio)
 sometimes  (ˌ)shim-
: an anthropoid ape (Pan troglodytes) of equatorial Africa that is smaller and more arboreal than the gorilla compare bonobo

Illustration of chimpanzee

Illustration of chimpanzee

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Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In 1995, in real life, a chimpanzee was taken from his mother as a baby and sold to Connecticut couple Sandra and Jerome Herold, who named him Travis and raised him to wear clothes, drink wine, eat at the dinner table and sleep in bed with them. Jen Yamato, Los Angeles Times, 23 July 2022 Nope occurs on the set of a ’90s sitcom, when a performing chimpanzee flies into a frenzy and attacks his castmates. David Sims, The Atlantic, 20 July 2022 In the first scene, a chimpanzee goes berserk on the set of a sitcom, a moment of absurd, bloody terror that becomes a motif and a thematic key. New York Times, 20 July 2022 As bizarre as owning a pet chimpanzee might sound, at least 15,000 primates exist as pets throughout the country, according to the Animal Welfare Institute. Cheyenne Roundtree, Rolling Stone, 30 July 2022 There’s also a subplot involving a former child actor (Steven Yeun) from a 1990s sitcom starring a chimpanzee that infamously went berserk (in suitably horrific, bloody fashion), but that narrative pretty much goes nowhere. Michael O'sullivan, Anchorage Daily News, 20 July 2022 There’s also a subplot involving a former child actor (Steven Yeun) from a 1990s sitcom starring a chimpanzee that infamously went berserk (in suitably horrific, bloody fashion), but that narrative pretty much goes nowhere. Michael O'sullivan, Washington Post, 20 July 2022 Jupe survived a bizarre tragedy on a sitcom set involving a chimpanzee, which sounds kind of funny, but is absolutely terrifying when Peele shows it to us. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, 20 July 2022 Antle was also charged with exchanging a chimpanzee with Franklin Drive Through Safari in Franklin, Texas. Jeffrey Collins, USA TODAY, 1 July 2022 See More

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

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Word History

Etymology

Kongo dialect chimpenzi

First Known Use

1738, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of chimpanzee was in 1738

Dictionary Entries Near chimpanzee

Cite this Entry

“Chimpanzee.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chimpanzee. Accessed 24 Sep. 2022.

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Kids Definition

chimpanzee

noun

chim·​pan·​zee ˌchim-ˌpan-ˈzē How to pronounce chimpanzee (audio)
chim-ˈpan-zē
: an African ape that lives mostly in trees and is smaller than the related gorilla

Medical Definition

chimpanzee

noun

chim·​pan·​zee ˌchim-ˌpan-ˈzē How to pronounce chimpanzee (audio) ˌshim- How to pronounce chimpanzee (audio)
-pən-; chim-ˈpan-zē,
shim-
: an anthropoid ape of the genus Pan (P. troglodytes) found in equatorial Africa that is smaller and more arboreal than the gorilla see bonobo

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Last Updated: 21 Aug 2022

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