Definition of monkey puzzle in English:

monkey puzzle

Line breaks: mon¦key puz¦zle
(also monkey puzzle tree)

noun

  • An evergreen coniferous tree with branches covered in spirals of tough spiny leaf-like scales, native to Chile.
    • Araucaria araucana, family Araucariaceae
    More example sentences
    • Logging and agricultural development have reduced the distribution of Chile's famed national tree - the monkey puzzle tree - to three small areas of the country.
    • The stubborn resistance of the Araucanians, who lent their name to the monkey puzzle tree and delighted in its piñons, left a strong Indian influence.
    • The tree which was stolen was an araucaria, or monkey puzzle, which was planted in memory of Maurice by his family.

Origin

mid 19th century: said to be so named in response to a remark that an attempt to climb the tree would puzzle a monkey.

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