picayune

[pik-ee-yoon, pik-uh-]
adjective Also, picayunish, Informal.
1.
of little value or account; small; trifling: a picayune amount.
2.
petty, carping, or prejudiced: I didn't want to seem picayune by criticizing.
noun
3.
(formerly, in Louisiana, Florida, etc.) a coin equal to half a Spanish real.
4.
any small coin, as a five-cent piece.
5.
Informal. an insignificant person or thing.

Origin:
1780–90; < Provençal picaioun small copper coin (compare French picaillons), derivative of an onomatopoetic base *pikk- beat, here referring to the coining of coppers

picayunishly, adverb
picayunishness, noun


1. trivial, insignificant. 2. narrow-minded.
Dictionary.com Unabridged

Picayune

[pik-uh-yoon, pik-ee-]
noun
a town in SE Mississippi.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
picayune (ˌpɪkəˈjuːn)
 
adj
1.  of small value or importance
2.  mean; petty
 
n
3.  the half real, an old Spanish-American coin
4.  (US) any coin of little value, esp a five-cent piece
 
[C19: from French picaillon coin from Piedmont, from Provençal picaioun, of unknown origin]
 
pica'yunishly
 
adv
 
pica'yunishness
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

picayune
1804, "coin of small value," probably from Louisiana Fr. picaillon "coin worth 5 cents," earlier the Fr. name of an old copper coin of Savoy (1750), from Prov. picaioun "small copper coin," from picaio "money," of uncertain origin.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Good humored writing is far too rare a commodity for anyone to be picayune about it.
The holiday season is that special time of the year when my being picayune brings added delight to my heart.
But the picayune has a habit of occasionally discovering things that are not so.
We have to answer this question at the macroscopic level, not by examining the learning of some picayune item.
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