Definition of goanna in English:



  • Australian term for monitor (sense 4 of the noun)
    • ‘The sculptures contrast with the pressed earth brick and rusted iron used in the main structure, natural materials in keeping with the building's reference to the totemic animal of the area, the spiky-tailed goanna.’
    • ‘A long time ago, probably before the arrival of man, Queensland's Darling Downs was home to some big animals - two tonne wombats, giant kangaroos, goannas as long as buses and marsupial lions.’
    • ‘They are also prey, when smaller, to other animals such as feral pigs, goannas, turtles, barramundi, sea eagles and even other crocodiles.’
    • ‘One of these is a slimy reptile - the other is a goanna.’
    • ‘Often done in the ‘X-ray’ style, unique to Australia's Top End, they depict barramundi, turtles, goannas and wallabies.’


Mid 19th century: alteration of iguana.