the berry of the pepper plant, Piper nigrum, dried and used as a condiment, in pickling, etc.
anything very small or insignificant.
(of hair) growing in tight spirals.

before 1000; Middle English pepercorn; Old English piporcorn. See pepper, corn1

peppercornish, peppercorny, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
peppercorn (ˈpɛpəˌkɔːn)
1.  the small dried berry of the pepper plant (Piper nigrum)
2.  something trifling

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Example sentences
Scallops, supposedly with pink peppercorn, have all the kick of saltines.
There are five varieties of peppercorn, four types of cinnamon, and a wall full
  of curry seasonings.
Land levelling has already begun, and the peppercorn rents he is charging will
  help fund the requisite infrastructure.
Hearty fare includes such offerings as jumbo lobster tail and peppercorn steak.
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