Posted by TheFallen on January 30, 2003
In Reply to: Give a Monkey's posted by ESC on January 30, 2003
: : : Origin of the phrase "couldn't give a monkey's" ?
: : : A monkey's what? Is it rhyming slang perhaps?
: : : Thanks
: : : Jon
: : I believe it to be just another case of choosing an animal to illustrate a point - eg 'sick as a parrot', 'dog-tired'. The example is particularly crude, because I've always understood that there's a missing word, indicating that things are so trivial as to be not worth caring about. 'I don't give a monkey's f**k'.
: I thought it was "a monkey's butt," from the "I don't give a rat's a**" genre.
The following massively unscientific results from both Google and Googlefight:-
Don't give a monkey's ass/arse - 5,760 hits
give a monkey's uncle - 5,280 hits
Don't give a monkey's f**k - 3,070 hits
Don't give a monkey's butt - 2,770 hits
Don't give a monkey's grin - 2,650 hits
Don't give a monkey's toss - 1,180 hits
Don't give a monkey's fart - 752 hits
Don't give a monkey(')s with none of the other suffixed words appearing on the same page - 550 hits
Just for comparative purposes, I append the following results too:-
Don't give a toss - 446,000 hits
Don't give a rat(')s ass/arse - 67,150 hits
Don't give a (tinker's) cuss - 56,140 hits