any of various mongooses of SW Africa, esp. a small, grayish one (Suricata suricatta) that lives in colonies underground
Origin of meerkatAfrikaans from Du, name of type of monkey, literally , sea cat
A small burrowing mongoose (Suricata suricatta) of southern Africa, having brownish-gray fur and a long tail, which it uses for balance when it stands on its hind legs. Also called suricate .
Origin of meerkatAfrikaans from Middle Dutch meercatte monkey perhaps a compound of meer sea (because monkeys came to Europe from overseas) ; see mori- in Indo-European roots. catte cat ( from Germanic kattuz ); see cat . or perhaps a folk-etymological alteration of an Indic word akin to Marathi māka&dlowdot; monkey ( from Middle Indic makka&tlowdot;a- ) ( from Sanskrit marka&tlowdot;ah ) ( perhaps of Dravidian origin and akin to Kannada manga )