Try Our Apps


What is the origin of "February"?

monkey business

frivolous or mischievous behavior.
improper or underhanded conduct; trickery.
Origin of monkey business
1880-85, Americanism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for monkey-business
Historical Examples
  • monkey-business on company time is only for Big Shots like him; not for small fry such as you.

    The Galaxy Primes Edward Elmer Smith
  • I'm going to talk to you man to man, Leon, and no monkey-business about it nor nothing.

    Potash & Perlmutter Montague Glass
British Dictionary definitions for monkey-business

monkey business

(informal) mischievous, suspect, dishonest, or meddlesome behaviour or acts
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for monkey-business

monkey business

noun phrase

  1. Frivolous pranks; japes and jests, etc: He was full of monkey business, the clown
  2. Dubious and dishonest stratagems; trickiness: Show these kids that you're going to stand for no monkey business (1883+)
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with monkey-business

monkey business

Silly, mischievous, or deceitful conduct, as in The teacher told the children to cut out the monkey business and get to work, or I don't trust that lawyer—there's some monkey business going on. This expression transfers the tricks of monkeys to human behavior. [ Late 1800s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for monkey business

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for monkey

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for monkey-business