A principle is a law or rule that has to be, or usually is to be followed, or can be desirably followed, or is an inevitable consequence of something, such as the laws observed in nature or the way that a system is constructed. The principles of such a system are understood by its users as the essential characteristics of the system, or reflecting system's designed purpose, and the effective operation or use of which would be impossible if any one of the principles was to be ignored.

Examples of principles:

  • a descriptive comprehensive and fundamental law, doctrine, or assumption,
  • a normative rule or code of conduct,
  • a law or fact of nature underlying the working of an artificial device.

Read more about Principle:  Principle As Cause

Famous quotes containing the word principle:

    Now, what I want is, Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else, and root out everything else. You can only form the minds of reasoning animals upon Facts: nothing else will ever be of any service to them. This is the principle on which I bring up my own children, and this is the principle on which I bring up these children. Stick to Facts, sir!
    Charles Dickens (1812–1870)

    The principle office of history I take to be this: to prevent virtuous actions from being forgotten, and that evil words and deeds should fear an infamous reputation with posterity.
    Tacitus (c. 55–117)

    The mode of founding a college is, commonly, to get up a subscription of dollars and cents, and then, following blindly the principles of a division of labor to its extreme,—a principle which should never be followed but with circumspection,—to call in a contractor who makes this a subject of speculation,... and for these oversights successive generations have to pay.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)