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1first in order of importance; main:the country’s principal cities 2(of money) denoting an original sum invested or lent:the principal amount of your investment
1the person with the highest authority or most important position in an organization, institution, or group:a design consultancy whose principal is based in San Francisco the head of a school, college, or other educational institution. the leading performer in a concert, play, ballet, or opera. Music the leading player in each section of an orchestra. 2a sum of money lent or invested on which interest is paid:the winners are paid from the interest without even touching the principal 3a person for whom another acts as an agent or representative:stockbrokers in Tokyo act as agents rather than as principals Law the person directly responsible for a crime. historical each of the combatants in a duel. 4a main rafter supporting purlins. 5an organ stop sounding a main register of open flue pipes typically an octave above the diapason.
Do not confuse principal
means 'main or most important' (the country’s principal cities
), whereas principle
means 'a law, rule, or theory that something is based on' (the general principles of law