hominid

1 of 2

noun

hom·​i·​nid ˈhä-mə-nəd How to pronounce hominid (audio)
-ˌnid
plural hominids
: any of a family (Hominidae) of erect bipedal primate mammals that includes recent humans together with extinct ancestral and related forms and in some recent classifications the great apes (the orangutan, gorilla, chimpanzee, and bonobo)

hominid

2 of 2

adjective

: of, relating to, or being a member of a family (Hominidae) of erect, bipedal, primate mammals that includes recent humans together with extinct ancestral and related forms and in some recent classifications the gorilla, chimpanzee, and orangutan
The discovery of a 3.5-million-year-old hominid skull and other fossil remains in northern Kenya is shaking the human family tree at its very roots.Michael Balter

Examples of hominid in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Early hominids moved into northern areas of Europe without using fire constantly. Elizabeth Gamillo, Discover Magazine, 6 Feb. 2024 Researchers at the University of Warwick in Coventry, England, studied two types of orangutan calls by playing them in the savanna in South Africa, which is similar to the landscape in which the hominids would have lived as language developed. Julia Jacobo, ABC News, 21 Dec. 2023 They were frequently depicted in Paleolithic art, and their body parts were used as ornaments, according to the authors—part of a long-standing relationship between carnivores and hominids that shaped cultural behaviors. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, 18 Oct. 2023 In many ways, this makes the hominid even more remarkable. Gabe Allen, Discover Magazine, 5 Oct. 2023 The hominid resembled ancient human lineages more closely than modern-day humans, even though researchers found it in a relatively young fossil bed. Gabe Allen, Discover Magazine, 5 Oct. 2023 Over 40 percent of the Lucy skeleton was preserved, which helped reinforce the theory that hominids from this period walked upright, perhaps to carry food and infants. Amiah Taylor, Discover Magazine, 28 Sep. 2023 This shouldn’t be too surprising, however, given the world ancient hominids lived in. Sara Kiley Watson, Popular Science, 14 June 2023 Sightings of the Mogollon Monster have been reported in the eastern part of Arizona and people have described a hairy hominid with human-like proportions that emits pungent smells. The Arizona Republic, 18 Aug. 2023
Adjective
If the researchers can extend their findings to earlier spheroids found in Africa, from the Oldowan stone industry, then the balls could serve as some of the first evidence of hominid intelligence. Matt Hrodey, Discover Magazine, 18 Sep. 2023 Generations that lived through the stark 117,000-year period helped to rebuild hominid populations in Europe and Asia to a relatively stable level of about 27,160 breeders. Matt Hrodey, Discover Magazine, 6 Sep. 2023 If there were an earlier hominid exodus from Africa 2 million years ago or longer, researchers don’t expect to find the proof at Dmanisi. Gemma Tarlach, Discover Magazine, 26 Feb. 2015 This same fossil site is home to the famous footprints of the hominid Australopithecus. Laura Baisas, Popular Science, 21 June 2023 But these adaptations may have cost the hominid resilience to other environmental pressures. Roni Dengler, Discover Magazine, 16 July 2019 An enlarged brain case also distinguishes this species from our more distant, early hominid ancestor Australopithecus — famously known for the 3-million-year-old Lucy specimen in Ethiopia. Tree Meinch, Discover Magazine, 30 May 2023 Thirteen hominid teeth that were discovered in a cave on an island in the English Channel between 1910 and 1911 have been re-examined with CT technology by researchers from The Natural History Museum of London, UCL Institute of Archaeology, University of Kent and four other institutions. Rebecca Coffey, Forbes, 3 Mar. 2021 All the hominid fossils found so far have been between two layers of volcanic rock from regional eruptions conclusively dated between 1.76 million and 1.85 million years ago. Gemma Tarlach, Discover Magazine, 26 Feb. 2015 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hominid.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

New Latin Hominidae, from Homin-, Homo + -idae

First Known Use

Noun

circa 1889, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1915, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hominid was circa 1889

Dictionary Entries Near hominid

Cite this Entry

“Hominid.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hominid. Accessed 25 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

hominid

noun
hom·​i·​nid ˈhäm-ə-nəd How to pronounce hominid (audio)
-ˌnid
: any of a family of two-footed primate mammals that include the human beings together with their extinct ancestors and related forms
hominid adjective

Medical Definition

hominid

noun
hom·​i·​nid ˈhäm-ə-nəd, -ˌnid How to pronounce hominid (audio)
: any of a family (Hominidae) of erect, bipedal, primate mammals that includes recent humans together with extinct ancestral and related forms and the gorilla, chimpanzee, bonobo, and orangutan
hominid adjective

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