jackanapes noun1 : monkey, ape 2 a : an impudent or conceited fellow b : a saucy or mischievous child
Mrs. Hobson had her neighbor‘s son pegged as a disrespectfuljackanapes and was thereforereluctant to hire him to shovel the driveway.
“If I were still the rambunctious littlejackanapes I once was, I would havestayed in the room and playedastronaut all day.” — ChristopherMuther, Boston Globe, August 16, 2014
Did you know?
William de la Pole, the Duke of Suffolk, was a well-regarded soldierand commander during the HundredYears‘ War. It was during his dukedom (1448–1450), however, thatEngland lost its possessions in northern France, and his popularityconsequently suffered. The coat of arms for de la Pole‘s family sportedan image of a collar and chain that, at the time, was commonly used for leashing pet monkeys, then knownas jackanapes (a word whoseprecise origin is uncertain). By association, people gave the Dukethe nickname “Jack Napis,” and soonjackanapes took on a life of its own as a word for an impudent personand, later, a misbehaving child.