not give a monkey's

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Possibly a euphemistic shortening of not to give a monkey's toss or not to give a monkey's fart

Verb[edit]

not to give a monkey’s

  1. (idiomatic, UK) Not to have the slightest interest or concern
    • 1998: Willis Hall, Keith Waterhouse, Billy Liar - He knows what he can do with his calendars. I don't give a monkey's. I'm leaving. I've got another job.
    • 2002: "A British managing director", quoted in Robert Westwood, Stephen Linstead, The Language of Organization - I couldn't give a monkey's. What I am interested in is the things that drive the big numbers.
    • 2004: Randall Stevenson, The Oxford English Literary History, 1960-2000 - Though a huge majority of the population may have continued not to give a monkey's for Derrida, Lacan, or Foucault themselves...
    • 2005: Justine Roberts, Carrie Longton, Mums on Pregnancy: Trade Secrets from the Real Experts - A friend living in France reports that the French don't give a monkey's about unpasteurized dairy products (cheese, etc.) but that they are completely paranoid about le toxoplasmosis.

Synonyms[edit]