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Bad Monkey

I'm only a fool, and I only really speak English, French and Italian, and I've learned these from people I've met while being very silly, so it's possible many of these are so wrong that you'll laugh your face completely off over how wrong they are. Please tell me if they're wrong and I'll fix them!​​

Note: I only add "bad monkeys" to this list after I have personally met someone who has told me how to say "bad monkey" in a new language. I don't just troll online translator-bots! After learning a "bad monkey" from an actual person, I will sometimes ask teh interwebz to assist me in presenting the written characters correctly, but most of this information comes from people meeting Jane the Phoole and schooling her in new languages for "bad monkey."​

I already know "Bad Monkey" in these languages

Afrikaans: stoute apie (sounds like "STO-teh AH-pee," and cheers to Andrew Schaug of the Omniglot Fan Club for the correct spelling!)

Albanian: majmun i keg (my-MOON ee KAYSHE)

American Sign Language: ("bad" - touch fingertips of one hand to lips, palm downward; then move hand swiftly downward and away, so that palm faces away from body; "monkey" - mime scritching yourself on your sides with your hands curled, like a monkey's, and make a chimpy face!)

Arabic (Colloquial): (sounds like "curd saEEa," where the initial "c" is glottal, and the final "a" stops glottally)

Arabic (Egyptian): (sounds like "sa-DAHN WAY-heesh")

Arabic (Palestinian): (sounds like "ehrd sadAHN" or possible "eerd artil"

Armenian (Lebanese Armenian): (sounds like "kesh kopig")

Armenian (Russian Armenian):  (sounds like "vod kopig")

ASCII in Binary: 01000010 01100001 01100100 00100000 01001101 01101111 01101110 01101011 01100101 01111001

Bahasa Melayu (spoken in Malaysia): (sounds like "monyet jahad")

Basque (Euskara): tximino txarra (/chee-MEE-no CHAR-rah/) (Cheers to André Müller of the Omniglot Fan Club for the correction and pronunciation!)

Belarusian: дрэнная малпа (shkwood-NA-ya MAU-pa)

Bengali: kharap bandor (KAH-rahp BAHN-dor)

Bosnian: (sounds like LOSH MY-moon, but I would be most obliged to someone who speaks Bosnian if it could be written for me.)

British Sign Language: ("bad" - hold left hand up in front of you, with the back of your hand facing away from you, with just the pinky extended, and the other fingers and thumb curled toward the palm; "monkey" - mime scritching yourself on your sides with your hands curled, like a monkey's, and make a chimpy face!)

Bulgarian: лош маймуна (LOSH-a my-MOON-a, where the "o" in "LOSH-a" sounds like the "o" in "love")

Cantonese: (sounds like "HWAI HOH-gee," where the tone begins high on the first part of the first syllable, dips low for the second part of the first syllable, then begins low and rises through the second syllable, and the third syllable is simply aspirated )

Carney: bizzad mizzonkey

Catalan (Andorra):  mico dolent

Cherokee: uYi ac>sfIsf (ooh yoh ee ah dah lay sss gee yee sss)

Chinese: (sounds like "HWAI HOH-tze," where the tone begins high on the first part of the first syllable, dips low for the second part of the first syllable, then begins low and rises throug the second syllable, and the third syllable is simply aspirated)

Colombian: mico malo

Creole: makak mechen (ma-KOK may-SHONH)

Croatian: loš majmun (LOSH MY-moon)

Czech: zlé opice (ZWAH OH-pizza)

Danish: dårlige abe (I need a Danish person to say this for me, please.)

Dutch: (sounds like "schtout apyeh")

Elvish (Sindarin): Morriúa Nadorhuan (Thank you to André Müller of the Omniglot Fan Club for requesting clarification between Sindarin and Quenya!)

Esperanto: malbona simio (/mal-BOW-nah see-MEE-oh/) (Thanks to André Müller of the Omniglot Fan Club for the correction and pronunciation!)

Estonian: paha ahv (PA-ha AF)

Euskara: (see Basque)

Filipino: pangit amo

Finnish: paha apina (PA-ha AHP-ee-na) or huono apina (HWO-no AHP-ee-na)

French: méchant singe (may-SHAWNT SANZH, sort of, without much of that "t" at the end at all - and merci to Dominique Couture of the Omniglot Fan Club for the corrected word order!)

Fujianese (or Hokkien, Southeastern Chinese): (sounds like YAI GA-oh YAHng, with inflection dropping on Syllable 1, bouncing down-up on Syllables 2 and 3, and dropping on Syllable 4)

Gaelic: moncai dona

Galician: mal macaco

German: böser Affe (/BER-zuh UFF-fuh/) (Danke to André Müller of the Omniglot Fan Club for the correction and pronunciation!)

Greek (Ancient): κακός πίθηκος (ka-KOS PEE-thay-kos, with long "o"s like in "toast")

Greek (Modern): κακός πίθηκος (ka-KOS PEE-thee-kos, with long "o"s like in "toast")

Gujarati: (sounds like LOO-cho VAHN-dah-roh)

Hausa (Chad): mugu biri

Hawaiian: maka'i 'ole keko

Hebrew: קוף רע (kof rrrah)

Highlanders (a dialect of Polish distinct enough to be considered its own language by its speakers): nie dobro małpo (sounds like "NYAY DOHbroh MOWpoh," where "OW" is like "owl")

Hindi: (sounds like "to-FA-nee VAHN-da-ro") or (sounds like "BOO-ra BAHN-dar")

Hindustani: (sounds like "BOO-ra BAHN-dar")

Hmong: (sounds like "LEE-a PEY")

Hokkien (Southeastern Chinese): see Fujianese

Hungarian: rossz majom (ROHS ma-YOHM)

Icelandic: illur api (ILLuhr AHpee, sing-song-y)

Igbo (spoken in Nigeria): ajo enwe

Ilocano (spoken in the Phillippines): (sounds like "daZENGHya ohnGOY")

Ilongo (spoken in the Phillippines): (sounds like "TOHNto nga-amOH")

Indian (Gujarati): (sounds like "LOO-cho VAHN-da-ro")

Indonesian: nakál oráng hútan

Irish: monkey drock

Italian: scimmia cattiva (SHIMM-ya caht-TEEV-a)

Japanese: 悪い猿 (sounds like "wah-RU-ih sa-RU")

Jugoslav: (sounds like LOSH MY-moon; would someone who speaks Jugoslav please write it for me?)

Kannada (spoken in India, predominantly in the southwestern state of Karnataka): ketta koti

Kapampangan: Marok a matsin (cheers to Jeronimo Constantina of the Omniglot Fan Club for this language contribution!)

Kashmiri:  (sounds like "gandha pounz")

Klingon: mughato' qab

Korean: 나쁜 원숭이 (NA-poon on-soong-HEE)

Latin: simius malus

Latvian:  (sounds like "slichts PAIR-ti-kiss")

Lebanese: (sounds like "sahDEEN majaNEEN," where the "j" is like the "z" in "Zsa Zsa Gabor")

Liberian Pidgin English:  bad jako (sounds like "bad JOCK-o")

Lithuanian: blogas beždžionių (BLOW-ga bez-JOIN-ya)

Macedonian: (sounds like LOSH MYmoon)

Maori (Cook Island): tapi rau mangiki (TAHpee rau may-NYEE-kee)

Maori (Ngata Maori, New Zealand): kino makimaki (KEEno MAHkeeMAHkee)

Marathi (spoken in some places in India): (sounds like "DUSHtah mahKAHRD," where the "r" is tapped very, very lightly)

Malay:  monyet buruk

Malayalam: cheetah koranguh

Mongolian: muu sarrmagchien (MOOOO [sustained just a bit longer than you'd expect] sahrr-mak-CHEEN, where the "rr" is rolled)

Montenegran: (sounds like LOSH MY-moon; could someone from Montenegro kindly write it?)

Morse Code: -... .- -.. -- --- -. -.- . -.--

Nepali: (sounds like kharab bandar)

Norwegian: dårlig apekatt (could a Norwegian person please pronounce this for me?)

One: nerra prem

Pashto: بد شاه بلوطونه پخيدل (could someone who speaks Pashto please pronounce this for me?)

Phillippine: pangit amo

Phonetic Alphabet:  Bravo Alpha Delta-Mike Oscar November Kilo Echo Yankee

Pidgin (Papua New Guinea): nogut mani

Pig Latin: adbay onkeymay

Persian (Farsi): ميمون بد (sounds like "my-MOON eh BAHD," but I'm not sure how to spell it)

Polish: Attention: There are five ways to say "bad monkey" in Polish!

(1) nie dobra małpa (nyay DOHbra MOW-pa, where the "OW" is like "owl")

(2) zła małpa (zwah MOW-pa)

(3) gwupia małpa (GWOO-pya MOW-pa)

(4) niegrzeczna małpa (nyeg-ZHECH-na MOW-pa)

(5) vredna małpa

Portuguese in Brazil: macaco mau (muh-KA-co MAU)

Portuguese in Portugal: huim macaco / tehibo macaco (HWEEM muh-KA-co / te-HEE-bo muh-KA-co)

Puerto Rican Spanish: mono maldita

Punjabi: (sounds like KAH-rab bu-JO)

Romanian: maimuţă rea (my-MOO-teh RREAH, with the "r"s rolled)

Russian: плохая обезьянка (Richard Frueh informs us ,"'плохая'  is pronounced more like 'plo-KHAI-ya' .  There's more 'K' than there in the Hebrew 'ch' sound...and for monkey,  'зь'  is more of a soft, longer 'z' like in 'buzz'.  The funny mark after the Ze is a soft sign, so it's more like 'oh-beezz-Yah-na'  and the 'K' just goes totally away for a reason I knew 20 years ago." Cheers, Richard!)

Sanskrit: (sounds like DOOSH-tah KAH-pee)



Serbian: лош мајмун (LOSH MY-moon)

Shona (Zimbabwe): There are several ways to say "bad monkey" in this language: shoko yakaipa (SHO-ko yah-kah-EE-pa) or shoko yakashata (SHO-ko yah-kah-sha-ta) tsoko yakaipa (TSO-ko, the t isn't silent, yah-kah-EE-pa ) or tsoko yakashata (TSO-ko yah-kah-sha-ta) gudo yakaipa (gU-doh yah-kah-EE-pa) gudo yakashata (gU-doh yah-kah-sha-ta) (Courtesy Sara Mock's friend from Zimbabwe, who tells me that there's no general word for "monkey" in Shona; shoko and tsoko refer to a velvet monkey, and gudo indicates a baboon, but Shona speakers will use "monkey" and "baboon" interchangeably.)

Sindhi (Pakistan province of Sindh): kino BHO-lo (characters must be transcribed by hand as of 22 August MMXII)

Slovak: zlé opice (ZWAH OH-pizza)

Sotho (spoken in South Africa and Lesotho):  Ts'oene e khathatsang

Spanish in Mexico: chango malo (CHAHN-go MAH-lo) (don't say this in Spain!)

Spanish in Mexico City's Distrito Federal (Polanco area) and Chiapas:  pinche mono (PEEN-chay MOH-no)

Spanish in Spain: mono malo (MOH-no MAH-lo)

Sumerian:  ugabi niggig

Swahili: tumbili mbaya (toomBEElee mBAHyah) (Caution: if used in an improper context, can also mean "undead zombie monkey." Use with care!)

Swedish: UPDATE! dåligt-beteende apa (DOH-lick be-TAYN-deh AH-pa) means "badly-behaving monkey."  Dålig apa (DOH-lick OW-pa, with the "OW" sounding like "owl" again - really means "poorly functioning monkey," and you must ask Jane about it sometime) Update! elak apa (AY-lahk OW-pa) is Swedish for "naughty monkey," I have learned since my encounter with the Prince of Sweden. Do not, however, allow this new knowledge to dissuade you from enquiring about the whole "poorly-functioning monkey" affair.

Syrian: (sounds like "CHEIRba MYmoon," where the initial "ch" is not like "church" but instead like tasty sweet"challah" bread, and where of course the "r" is rolled; alternatively, it may be pronounced "SA-dahn mahj-NOON")

Tagalog (spoken in the Philippines): (sounds like "sa-BA-hey ohn-GOY" or "ma-sa-MAHNG ohn-GOY")

Taiwanese: (sounds like "pai gkow," where the "ow" is like "owl," and the tone is high for the first syllable, then EXTREMELY LOW for the second syllable, and the "gk" is nearly glottal)

Tamil: ketta korungu

Telugu (spoken in a southeastern region of India): chedda kothi (CHEH-duh KOH-tee)

Thai: ลิงไม่ดี (sounds like "ling mai dee" - inflection goes -\-) (Thanks to André Müller of the Omniglot Fan Club for the correction and pronunciation!)

​Tsez (a language from the Caucasus): жука маймалак / žuka maymalak (pronounced /ZHOO-ka my-mah-LUCK/) (Thanks to André Müller of theOmniglot Fan Club for this language contribution!)

Tswana:  Tshwene ya lesilo

Turkish: kötü maymun (KOH-too my-MOON)

Ukrainian: погана Мавпочка (po-HA-na MAHV-pa)

Urdu: bura bandar (BOO-ra BAHN-dar)

Vietnamese (Northern Vietnamese): con khi xâu (KOHN key SO)

Vietnamese (Southern Vietnamese): khỉ hù (key HOH)

Visayan: bastosna oongoy

Yiddish: שלעכט מאַלפּע shlekht malpe (shlekht MAL-peh)

Yucatec Maya:  k'as tuucha' (or possibly tuucha' k'as)

Walloon (spoken in Southern Belgium): måva séndje (pronunciation help sought!)

Welsh: mwnci drwg (MOON-key DROOG) or simach drwg (SEE-mock DROOG)

Zaarma (spoken in Nigér, an African country north of Nigeria): fono laalo (FOH-no LAH-lo)

Zulu:  inkawu e sile / imfene e sile


Some of the languages in which I still need to learn "Bad Monkey"

Gan Chinese
Min Dong



Min Bei









Northern Berber













Indo-Pakistani Sign Language

Chinese Sign Language

Hungarian Sign Language

Kenyan Sign Language

Japanese Sign Language

​Ecuadorian Sign Language

Norwegian-Malagasy Sign Language

French Sign Language

Spanish Sign Language

Mexican Sign Language

German Sign Language

Greek Sign Language

Irish Sign Language

Yugoslav Sign Language

New Zealand Sign Language

Hong Kong Sign Language

Dutch Sign Language

Catalan Sign Language


Swedish Sign Language

Interesting and Helpful World Language Links

List of Languages by Number of Native Speakers

Lists of Languages

Lists of Languages by Total Number of Speakers

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