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90s Slang You Should Know


[pee-nuht, -nuh t] /ˈpiˌnʌt, -nət/
the pod or the enclosed edible seed of the plant, Arachis hypogaea, of the legume family: the pod is forced underground in growing, where it ripens.
the plant itself.
any small or insignificant person or thing.
  1. Informal. a very small amount of money:
    working for peanuts.
  2. Slang. barbiturates.
  3. small pieces of Styrofoam used as a packing material.
of or relating to the peanut or peanuts.
made with or from peanuts.
Informal. small, insignificant, or petty.
Origin of peanut
An Americanism dating back to 1790-1800; pea1 + nut
Related forms
peanutty, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for peanuts
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He tried at the door with one hand and in the other he held an unexhausted bag of peanuts.

    Familiar Spanish Travels W. D. Howells
  • Then you don't mean to go on with your speculations in peanuts?

    Cricket at the Seashore Elizabeth Westyn Timlow
  • The buttered pan was ready with the peanuts in and the candy was poured over them.

  • And to prove his good intentions, he would send them a bag of peanuts.

    Dear Enemy Jean Webster
  • In bagging the peanuts, care should be taken to have the sacks well filled.

    The Peanut Plant B. W. Jones
British Dictionary definitions for peanuts


(slang) a trifling amount of money


  1. a leguminous plant, Arachis hypogaea, of tropical America: widely cultivated for its edible seeds. The seed pods are forced underground where they ripen See also hog peanut
  2. Also called goober, goober pea, (Brit) groundnut, (Brit) monkey nut. the edible nutlike seed of this plant, used for food and as a source of oil
See also peanuts
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for peanuts



1807, earlier ground nut, ground pea (1769). The plant is native to S.America. Portuguese traders took peanuts from Brazil and Peru to Africa by 1502 and it is known to have been cultivated in Chekiang Province in China by 1573, probably arriving with Portuguese sailors who made stops in Brazil en route to the Orient. Peanut butter attested by 1892; peanut brittle is from 1894. Peanut gallery "topmost rows of a theater" is from 1874, American English; peanuts "trivial sum" is from 1934.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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peanuts in Culture

“Peanuts” definition

A popular comic strip drawn by Charles M. Schulz. The world of Peanuts is populated by pint-sized versions of adults: perennial optimist and born loser Charlie Brown; bossy, loud-mouthed Lucy; gentle Linus with his security blanket; Schroeder, the brooding piano player; and many others.

Note: Perhaps the most popular character is the beagle Snoopy, Charlie Brown's dog, who is often accompanied by his feathered friend, Woodstock.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for peanuts



A small amount of money; a trivial sum; nickels and dimes: They got you working for peanuts (1934+)

Related Terms

that ain't hay



: a peanut operation


A small or trivial person; something insignificant (1934+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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