- a person who authorizes another, as an agent, to represent him or her.
- a person directly responsible for a crime, either as an actual perpetrator or as an abettor present at its commission.Compare accessory(def 3).
- an organ stop.
- the subject of a fugue.
Origin of principal
Synonyms for principal
Antonyms for principal
Examples from the Web for principal
Contemporary Examples of principal
The leak suggests that Mr. Obama remains blind to the principal cause of his foreign policy woes.Before Ditching His Top Aides, Obama Should Look in the Mirror
Leslie H. Gelb
November 2, 2014
But younger members of the community who encountered the man as a principal had a different tale to tell.
He recalled one event, when he was playing with a friend, Areah, when the principal came outside and found them.
In an ultra-Orthodox enclave of upstate New York, a former student has accused a principal of sex acts.
While abuse of a sexual nature is new for the principal, accusations of physical abuse have long dogged the school.
Historical Examples of principal
The African Christians soon formed one of the principal members of the primitive church.
The man lived, and his descendants are among the principal inhabitants of the town of Stratton to this day.Footprints of Former Men in Far Cornwall
Robert S. Hawker
“On deck, sir,” replied the big boatswain, touching his cap to the principal.Up The Baltic
He passed by the north lodge with a shudder, and walked straight along the high road towards the principal entrance of the Park.Aurora Floyd, Vol. III (of 3)
M. E. (Mary Elizabeth) Braddon
The principal work is his series of Lectures in the Royal Academy, twelve in number, commenced in 1801.
- a person who engages another to act as his agent
- an active participant in a crime
- the person primarily liable to fulfil an obligation
- capital or property, as contrasted with the income derived from it
- the original amount of a debt on which interest is calculated
- the chief instrumentalist in a section of the orchestra
- one of the singers in an opera company
- either of two types of open diapason organ stops, one of four-foot length and pitch and the other of eight-foot length and pitch
Word Origin for principal
c.1300, "main, principal, chief, dominant, most important;" also "great, large," from Old French principal "main, most important," of persons, "princely, high-ranking" (11c.), from Latin principalis "first in importance; original, primitive," from princeps (see prince).
c.1300, "ruler, governor;" also "main part;" from principal (adj.) or from or influenced by noun uses in Old French and Latin. From mid-14c. in the sense of "money on which interest is paid;" 1827 as "person in charge of a public school," though meaning "head of a college or hall" was in English from mid-15c.
The original amount of money lent, not including profits and interest.