Abstract Gorilla gorillaexemplifies a species that shows considerable variation in habitat, behaviour, genetic structure and morphology. This study examines variation of dental morphology in gorillas. Despite the marked size dimorphism, there are no significant shape differences between the sexes within subspecies. Differences in dental morphology, including tooth cusp proportions between the western G. g. gorillaand the eastern G. g. beringeiare considerable. Although more similar to G. g. beringeithan to the western G. g. gorilla, G. g. grauerialso shows distinct morphological features. This indicates that the morphology of G. g. graueriis not merely intermediate, and genetic isolation between the two eastern subspecies could have had a substantial influence. Such extensive variation in dental morphology in Gorilla gorillacan be considered to be the result of an interesting combination of factors, including local dietary adaptations.