principle
noun
1 basic general rule
ADJECTIVE
basic, broad, central, fundamental, general, underlying

the basic principles of car maintenance

bedrock (esp. AmE), cardinal, core, essential, key
universal
organizing

His novels reject chronology as an organizing principle.

abstract, theoretical

She is interested in actual human relationships rather than abstract principles.

constitutional, democratic, legal, market, political
mathematical, physical, scientific
VERB + PRINCIPLE
violate

This violates every principle of good writing.

embody, embrace, illustrate, incorporate

The house incorporates many principles of modern environmentally aware design.

discover, establish, formulate, lay down
apply, invoke
articulate, explain, outline
PRINCIPLE + VERB
apply

This principle applies to all kinds of selling.

underlie sth, underpin sth

the principles underlying Western philosophy

PREPOSITION
in principle

I agree with you in principle, but we'll need to discuss the details.

principle behind

She went on to explain the principles behind what she was doing.

PHRASES
the pleasure principle, the precautionary principle, the uncertainty principle

Does everything we do come down to the pleasure principle?

2 moral rule
ADJECTIVE
high
founding, guiding

Freedom is the founding principle of our Republic.

Biblical, religious
Christian, Islamic, etc.
ethical, moral

He was a man of high moral principles.

VERB + PRINCIPLE
abandon, betray, compromise

I refuse to compromise my principles by eating meat.

adhere to, stick to, uphold

She sticks to the principle that everyone should be treated equally.

be enshrined in sth

The principle of equality is enshrined in our Constitution.

PREPOSITION
against your principles

Eating meat was against her principles.

on principle

She's opposed to abortion on principle.

PHRASES
a matter of principle

They reject the proposal as a matter of principle.

a man/woman of principle (= person with high moral standards)

Collocations dictionary. 2013.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • principle — prin‧ci‧ple [ˈprɪnspl] noun 1. [countable, uncountable] a moral rule or set of ideas that makes you behave in a particular way: • The single European market works on market principles. • As a matter of principle (= a rule that is very important …   Financial and business terms

  • principle — principle, axiom, fundamental, law, theorem are comparable when they denote a proposition or other formulation stating a fact or a generalization accepted as true and basic. Principle applies to a generalization that provides a basis for… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Principle — Prin ci*ple, n. [F. principe, L. principium beginning, foundation, fr. princeps, cipis. See {Prince}.] 1. Beginning; commencement. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] Doubting sad end of principle unsound. Spenser. [1913 Webster] 2. A source, or origin; that… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • principle — I (axiom) noun accepted belief, adage, admitted maxim, article of belief, article of faith, assertion, assurance, basic doctrine, basic law, basic rule, basic truth, belief, canon, conviction, credo, declaration of faith, decretum, doctrine,… …   Law dictionary

  • principle — [prin′sə pəl] n. [ME, altered < MFr principe < L principium: see PRINCIPIUM] 1. the ultimate source, origin, or cause of something 2. a natural or original tendency, faculty, or endowment 3. a fundamental truth, law, doctrine, or motivating …   English World dictionary

  • principle — ► NOUN 1) a fundamental truth or proposition serving as the foundation for belief or action. 2) a rule or belief governing one s personal behaviour. 3) morally correct behaviour and attitudes. 4) a general scientific theorem or natural law. 5) a… …   English terms dictionary

  • principle — late 14c., fundamental truth or proposition, from Anglo Fr. principle, O.Fr. principe, from L. principium (plural principia) a beginning, first part, from princeps (see PRINCE (Cf. prince)). Meaning origin, source is attested from early 15c.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • principle — [n1] law, standard assumption, axiom, basis, canon, convention, criterion, dictum, doctrine, dogma, ethic, form, formula, foundation, fundamental, golden rule*, ground, maxim, origin, postulate, precept, prescript, principium, proposition,… …   New thesaurus

  • Principle — Prin ci*ple, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Principled}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Principling}.] To equip with principles; to establish, or fix, in certain principles; to impress with any tenet, or rule of conduct, good or ill. [1913 Webster] Governors should be… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • principle — /prin seuh peuhl/, n. 1. an accepted or professed rule of action or conduct: a person of good moral principles. 2. a fundamental, primary, or general law or truth from which others are derived: the principles of modern physics. 3. a fundamental… …   Universalium

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