Kongs (also known as the Apes in production litterature for the Donkey Kong Country television series) are sapient primates that make up much of the cast of the Donkey Kong franchise, with the eponymous character himself being one. They are capable of actions such as speech and building houses, and typically wear clothing, though the amount varies drastically with the individual, with Donkey Kong himself only wearing a tie, while many others wear full outfits. They seem to be native to Donkey Kong Island, and share an animosity with much of the crocodilian Kremling race. While most of them share the surname "Kong," they are not all directly related to one another. Kongs can resemble any number of real-life primates, with Donkey Kong, Funky Kong, and several others being gorillas, Diddy Kong being a monkey, Dixie Kong and Tiny Kong being chimpanzees, and Lanky Kong being an orangutan.
In the Donkey Kong Country cartoon and Saturday Supercade, they are never referred to as "Kongs" outside of their individual names. Instead, generic names of various real-life types of primates, such as "monkeys," "chimps," "gorillas", and "apes" are used fairly interchangeably to describe them. However, the term "baboon" seems to be reserved as an insult, potentially due to it sounding similar to the word "buffoon," and is even used against other species, such as Cranky Kong using it against Krusha in From Zero to Hero.
The word "Kong" is a Japanese slang word for "gorilla".
The Kong Family (also known as the Donkey Kong Family or Kong Klan) and the DK Crew is the main group of Kongs, being Donkey Kong's family and close friends. The patriarch of the family is Cranky Kong, the original Donkey Kong. In the Donkey Kong franchise series of video games, members of the Kong Family are either playable characters or supporting characters that aid the main heroes on their journey, although they also receive help from allies outside of the family, including the Animal Friends and the Kremling K. Lumsy.
The family often uses the initials "DK" as a symbol, which most often represents Donkey Kong. It is seen on Donkey Kong's tie, DK Barrels, DK Coins, the Level Flags, DK Spaces, and various other objects around Donkey Kong Island. The symbol is also used in the Super Smash Bros. series, although in this context, it is used as the logo for the Donkey Kong franchise in general instead of just the Kong Family members (since King K. Rool and Klaptraps also use it).
Names in other languages
List of Kongs
Donkey Kong's family
Dixie Kong's family