principal, principle - vocabulary

  edgood  —  Grammar Tips

Principal: the head of a school; also means “money” or “the balance on your mortgage.” As an adjective, principal means “main.”

Principle: acts only as a noun. It means “rule” or “moral tenet.”

Use this trick:

A principal should be your pal. Principle ends in -le. So does rule.

Example: According to the principal rule at Sunshine Elementary, you must obey the principal and respect the principles of democracy.

Note: You’ll find an extended discussion of principal and principle in’s section on Common Grammatical Mistakes. Click here for the beginning of that discussion.