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frivolous or mischievous behavior.
improper or underhanded conduct; trickery.
(informal) mischievous, suspect, dishonest, or meddlesome behaviour or acts

noun phrase

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 ]


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  • Monkey-dog

    noun 1. . [af-uh n-pin-sher] /ˈæf ənˌpɪn ʃər/ noun 1. one of a breed of toy dogs having a dense, wiry, red or gray coat with tufts of hair around the eyes, nose, and chin, cropped ears, and a docked tail. /ˈæfənˌpɪnʃə/ noun 1. a small wire-haired breed of dog of European origin, having tufts […]

  • Monkey drill

    noun athletic or military training or calisthenics Usage Note slang noun phrase Calisthenics; physical training exercises [late 1800s+ Armed forces; fr the fact that the exercisers follow the movements of the instructor, as ”monkey see, monkey do”]

  • Monkey-faced owl

    [muhng-kee-feyst] /ˈmʌŋ kiˌfeɪst/ noun 1. .

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