- \ \  The origins of baboon are obscure, but it seems that the notion underlying it may be that of ‘grimacing’. Baboons characteristically draw back their lips in snarling, revealing their teeth, and it has been speculated that there may be a connection with Old French baboue ‘grimace’. However that may be, it was certainly in Old French that the word first surfaced, as babuin, and originally it meant ‘gaping figure’ (as in a gargoyle) as well as ‘ape’. This alternative meaning was carried over when the Old French word was borrowed into English, where it remained a live sense of baboon until the 16th century.
Word origins - 2ed. J. Ayto. 2005.
Look at other dictionaries:
baboon — (n.) type of ape, c.1400, babewyn, earlier a grotesque figure used in architecture or decoration (early 14c.), from Fr. babouin baboon, from O.Fr. baboin ape, earlier simpleton, dimwit, fool (13c.), also gaping figure (such as a gargoyle), so… … Etymology dictionary
Baboon — Bab*oon , n. [OE. babewin, baboin, fr. F. babouin, or LL. babewynus. Of unknown origin; cf. D. baviaan, G. pavian, baboon, F. babine lip of ape, dogs, etc., dial. G. b[ a]ppe mouth.] (Zo[ o]l.) One of the Old World Quadrumana, of the genera… … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
baboon — ► NOUN ▪ a large ground dwelling monkey with a long snout. ORIGIN originally denoting a grotesque figure used in architecture: from Old French babuin or Latin babewynus … English terms dictionary
baboon — [ba bo͞on′, bəbo͞on′] n. [ME babewyne < OFr babuin, ape, fool < baboue, lip (of animals) < bab, echoic: see BABBLE] any of various large, fierce, short tailed Old World monkeys (mainly genus Papio) of Africa and Arabia, having a doglike… … English World dictionary
Baboon — For other uses, see Baboon (disambiguation). Baboon … Wikipedia
baboon — baboonish, adj. /ba boohn / or, esp. Brit., /beuh /, n. 1. any of various large, terrestrial monkeys of the genus Papio and related genera, of Africa and Arabia, having a doglike muzzle, large cheek pouches, and a short tail. 2. a coarse,… … Universalium
baboon — It has been possible to use ‘baboon’ as a friendly insult since at least the seventeenth century. In Ben Jonson’s The Alchemist ‘my good baboon’ occurs, and modern women are likely to refer to clumsy men as ‘you big baboon’ without too much… … A dictionary of epithets and terms of address
baboon — n. a jerk; a stupid person. (Also a rude term of address.) □ Stop acting like a baboon! Grow up! □ Tell that ugly baboon to get out of here. □ Hey, baboon, get off my lawn! … Dictionary of American slang and colloquial expressions
baboon —  The origins of baboon are obscure, but it seems that the notion underlying it may be that of ‘grimacing’. Baboons characteristically draw back their lips in snarling, revealing their teeth, and it has been speculated that there may be a… … The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins
baboon — UK [bəˈbuːn] / US [bəˈbun] noun [countable] Word forms baboon : singular baboon plural baboons a type of large monkey from Africa or South Asia that lives on the ground … English dictionary
baboon — babuinas statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas taksono rangas rūšis atitikmenys: lot. Papio cynocephalus angl. baboon; yellow baboon vok. Babuin Pavian; gelber Babuin rus. бабуин; жёлтый павиан; павиан бабуин pranc. babouin cynocéphale ryšiai:… … Žinduolių pavadinimų žodynas