Delson, Eric Lehman College and Graduate Center, The City University of New York; Department of Vertebrate Paleontology, American Museum of Natural History, New York, New York.
Last reviewed:December 2019
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- Old World species
- Mandrills, baboons, and geladas
- Proboscis monkey
- Colobus monkeys
- New World species
- Marmosets and tamarins
- Capuchins and squirrel monkeys
- Titis, sakis, and uakaris
- Howler monkeys
- Spider and woolly monkeys
- Owl monkeys
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
An adaptive or evolutionary grade among the primates, with representatives divided into Old World and New World groups. The term monkey is not indicative of a taxonomic or phylogenetic relationship. Instead, it is a common name used to describe any of the nonhuman primate mammals categorized into Old World and New World species. The extant Old World or catarrhine monkeys belong to the superfamily Cercopithecoidea in the parvorder Catarrhini (note that the other superfamily in this parvorder is Hominoidea, which comprises apes and humans), whereas the extant New World or platyrrhine monkeys (Fig. 1) are assigned to the superfamily Ceboidea in the parvorder Platyrrhini. The Old World and New World forms probably reached a monkey level of adaptation independently some time after their separation from a common ancestor, perhaps 45–55 million years ago (MYA). See also: Apes; Fossil apes; Fossil primates; Primate
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