Picayunishness

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
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To picayunishness
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
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
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
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature