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principal
used in Washington Square

7 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
  • His wife had been a reasonable woman, but she was a bright exception; among several things that he was sure of, this was perhaps the principal.
    Chapter 2 (26% in)
  • Her appearance of health constituted her principal claim to beauty, and her clear, fresh complexion, in which white and red were very equally distributed, was, indeed, an excellent thing to see.
    Chapter 3 (5% in)
  • ...itself alike to the infant imagination and the infant palate; it was here that you took your first walks abroad, following the nursery-maid with unequal step and sniffing up the strange odour of the ailantus-trees which at that time formed the principal umbrage of the Square, and diffused an aroma that you were not yet critical enough to dislike as it deserved; it was here, finally, that your first school, kept by a broad-bosomed, broad-based old lady with a ferule, who was always...
    Chapter 3 (69% in)
  • He had seen all the principal actors—he had been to all the best theatres in London and Paris.
    Chapter 6 (32% in)
  • But the principal thing that we know about this young man—who is, indeed, very intelligent—leads us to suppose that, however much he may value your personal merits, he values your money more.
    Chapter 11 (73% in)
  • The principal thing we know about him is that he has led a life of dissipation, and has spent a fortune of his own in doing so.
    Chapter 11 (75% in)
  • "That is not the principal thing we know about him," she said; and there was a touch of her tremor in her voice.
    Chapter 11 (87% in)

There are no more uses of "principal" in Washington Square.

Typical Usage  (best examples)
Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary / more samples — Oxford® USDictionary list — Onelook.com®