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principal
used in Moby Dick

4 uses
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Definition
most important; or person who is most important
The exact meaning of principal can depend upon its context. For example:
  • "the principal idea" or "the principal performer" — the most important
  • "the principal of the school" — the person in charge
  • "a principal of a company" — an owner or person with controlling authority
  • "the principal in a transaction" (as contrasted to the agent) — the person on whose behalf an agent acts
  • That inscrutable thing is chiefly what I hate; and be the white whale agent, or be the white whale principal, I will wreak that hate upon him.
    Chapters 34-36 — The Cabin-Table; The Mast-Head; The Qarter-Deck—Ahab and all (84% in)
  • Old Captain Peleg, many years her chief-mate, before he commanded another vessel of his own, and now a retired seaman, and one of the principal owners of the Pequod,—this old Peleg, during the term of his chief-mateship, had built upon her original grotesqueness, and inlaid it, all over, with a quaintness both of material and device, unmatched by anything except it be Thorkill-Hake's carved buckler or bedstead.
    Chapters 16-18 — The Ship; The Ramadan; His Mark (8% in)
  • But one thing, nevertheless, that made me a little distrustful about receiving a generous share of the profits was this: Ashore, I had heard something of both Captain Peleg and his unaccountable old crony Bildad; how that they being the principal proprietors of the Pequod, therefore the other and more inconsiderable and scattered owners, left nearly the whole management of the ship's affairs to these two.
    Chapters 16-18 — The Ship; The Ramadan; His Mark (41% in)
  • Alarmed at this terrible outburst between the two principal and responsible owners of the ship, and feeling half a mind to give up all idea of sailing in a vessel so questionably owned and temporarily commanded, I stepped aside from the door to give egress to Bildad, who, I made no doubt, was all eagerness to vanish from before the awakened wrath of Peleg.
    Chapters 16-18 — The Ship; The Ramadan; His Mark (48% in)

There are no more uses of "principal" in Moby Dick.

Typical Usage  (best examples)
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