peppercorn

[pep-er-kawrn]
noun
  1. the berry of the pepper plant, Piper nigrum, dried and used as a condiment, in pickling, etc.
  2. anything very small or insignificant.
adjective
  1. (of hair) growing in tight spirals.

Origin of peppercorn

before 1000; Middle English pepercorn; Old English piporcorn. See pepper, corn1
Related formspep·per·corn·ish, pep·per·corn·y, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for peppercorn

peppercorn

noun
  1. the small dried berry of the pepper plant (Piper nigrum)
  2. something trifling
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

Word Origin and History for peppercorn
n.

late Old English, from pepper (n.) + corn (n.1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper