Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “principal”

See all translations

principal

noun
 
 
/ˈprɪnsəpəl/
[C usually singular] FINANCE an amount of money lent or borrowed, rather than the interest paid on it: She lives off the interest and tries to keep the principal intact. These bonds involve the risk that the issuing company may be unable to pay interest or repay principal. The money is secured by the borrower's home, which is sold after the borrower's death to pay off the interest and principal.
[C] LAW a person who is directly involved in an arrangement, agreement, etc., rather than someone acting for that person: Once the principals sign the necessary papers the deal will be done.
[C] LAW a person who has legal responsibility for what a business or organization does: I later became a principal at an investment banking firm.
(Definition of principal noun from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of principal?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “principal” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

christmassy

typical of Christmas, or happy because it is Christmas

Word of the Day

Cleavage proves divisive in Cambridge’s words of 2014

by Alastair Horne,
December 19, 2014
​​​​ Other dictionaries may choose faddish novelties as their words of the year, but here at Cambridge, we like to do something different. We look for the words that have seen sudden surges in searches over the course of the year – words that have been baffling users of English and driven them

Read More 

cinderella surgery noun

December 15, 2014
cosmetic surgery to the feet We have all heard of people having nose jobs, boob jobs and liposuction – but now a new trend growing in popularity in America: Cinderella surgery.

Read More