Principle vs Nature - What's the difference?

principle | nature |

As a noun principle

is a fundamental assumption.

As a verb principle

is to equip with principles; to establish, or fix, in certain principles; to impress with any tenet or rule of conduct.

As a proper noun nature is

the sum of natural forces reified and considered as a sentient being, will, or principle.




(en noun)
  • A fundamental assumption.
  • * {{quote-web, date=2011-07-20, author=Edwin Mares, site=The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, title= Propositional Functions
  • , accessdate = 2012-07-15}}
    Let us consider ‘my dog is asleep on the floor’ again. Frege thinks that this sentence can be analyzed in various different ways. Instead of treating it as expressing the application of __ is asleep on the floor'' to ''my dog'', we can think of it as expressing the application of the concept
         ''my dog is asleep on __''
    to the object
         ''the floor''
    (see Frege 1919). Frege recognizes what is now a commonplace in the logical analysis of natural language. ''We can attribute more than one logical form to a single sentence
    . Let us call this the principle of multiple analyses . Frege does not claim that the principle always holds, but as we shall see, modern type theory does claim this.
  • A rule used to choose among solutions to a problem.
  • (usually, in the plural) Moral rule or aspect.
  • (physics) A rule or law of nature, or the basic idea on how the laws of nature are applied.
  • * {{quote-magazine, year=2013, month=July-August, author= Sarah Glaz
  • , title= Ode to Prime Numbers , volume=101, issue=4, magazine=(American Scientist) , passage=Some poems, echoing the purpose of early poetic treatises on scientific principles , attempt to elucidate the mathematical concepts that underlie prime numbers. Others play with primes’ cultural associations. Still others derive their structure from mathematical patterns involving primes.}}
  • A fundamental essence, particularly one producing a given quality.
  • * Gregory
  • Cathartine is the bitter, purgative principle of senna.
  • (obsolete) A beginning.
  • * (Edmund Spenser)
  • Doubting sad end of principle unsound.
  • A source, or origin; that from which anything proceeds; fundamental substance or energy; primordial substance; ultimate element, or cause.
  • * Tillotson
  • The soul of man is an active principle .
  • An original faculty or endowment.
  • * Stewart
  • those active principles whose direct and ultimate object is the communication either of enjoyment or suffering

    Usage notes

    Principle is always a noun ("moral rule"), but it is often confused with (principal), which can be an adjective ("most important") or a noun ("school principal"). Consult both definitions if in doubt. Incorrect usage: * He is the principle musician in the band * She worked ten years as school principle A mnemonic to avoid this confusion is "The principal'' alphabetic ''principle'' places ''A'' before ''E ".


    * (moral rule or aspect) tenet

    Derived terms

    * agreement in principle * anthropic principle * Aufbau principle * Bernoulli's principle * correspondence principle * cosmological principle * Dilbert principle * dormitive principle * equivalence principle * extractive principle * first principles * Huygens' principle * IBM Pollyanna Principle * Le Chatelier's principle * Mach's principle * matter of principle * Matthew principle * Mitchell principle * on principle * Pareto principle * Pauli exclusion principle * Peter principle * pigeonhole principle * precautionary principle * principle of least action * principle of substitutivity * principled stance * programming principle * reciprocity principle * strong equivalence principle * superposition principle * uncertainty principle * verifiability principle


  • To equip with principles; to establish, or fix, in certain principles; to impress with any tenet or rule of conduct.
  • * L'Estrange
  • Governors should be well principled .
  • * Locke
  • Let an enthusiast be principled that he or his teacher is inspired.



    Alternative forms

    * natuer (obsolete)


  • (lb) The natural world; consisting of all things unaffected by or predating human technology, production and design. e.g. the ecosystem, the natural environment, virgin ground, unmodified species, laws of nature.
  • * (1800-1859)
  • *:Nature has caprices which art cannot imitate.
  • *1891 , (Oscar Wilde), ''(The Decay of Lying)
  • *:Nature has good intentions, of course, but, as Aristotle once said, she cannot carry them out. When I look at a landscape I cannot help seeing all its defects.
  • The innate characteristics of a thing. What something will tend by its own constitution, to be or do. Distinct from what might be expected or intended.
  • *1920 , (Herman Cyril McNeile), , Ch.1:
  • *:Being by nature of a cheerful disposition, the symptom did not surprise his servant, late private of the same famous regiment, who was laying breakfast in an adjoining room.
  • *1869 , , :
  • *:Mark hardly knew whether to believe this or not. He already began to suspect that Roswell was something of a humbug, and though it was not in his nature to form a causeless dislike, he certainly did not feel disposed to like Roswell.
  • The summary of everything that has to do with biological, chemical and physical states and events in the physical universe.
  • *(John Milton) (1608-1674)
  • *:I oft admire / How Nature , wise and frugal, could commit / Such disproportions.
  • *{{quote-magazine, date=2012-01, author=Robert M. Pringle, volume=100, issue=1, page=31
  • , magazine=(American Scientist) , title= How to Be Manipulative , passage=As in much of biology, the most satisfying truths in ecology derive from manipulative experimentation. Tinker with nature and quantify how it responds.}}
  • Conformity to that which is natural, as distinguished from that which is artificial, or forced, or remote from actual experience.
  • *(William Shakespeare) (c.1564–1616)
  • *:One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.
  • Kind, sort; character; quality.
  • *(John Dryden) (1631-1700)
  • *:A dispute of this nature caused mischief.
  • *
  • *:Carried somehow, somewhither, for some reason, on these surging floods, were these travelers, of errand not wholly obvious to their fellows, yet of such sort as to call into query alike the nature of their errand and their own relations.
  • (lb) Physical constitution or existence; the vital powers; the natural life.
  • *(William Shakespeare) (c.1564–1616)
  • *:my days of nature
  • *(William Shakespeare) (c.1564–1616)
  • *:Oppressed nature sleeps.
  • (lb) Natural affection or reverence.
  • *(Alexander Pope) (1688-1744)
  • *:Have we not seen / The murdering son ascend his parent's bed, / Through violated nature force his way?
  • Derived terms

    * animal nature * back to nature * bad nature * by nature * call of nature * defy the laws of nature * crime against nature * freak of nature * good nature * human nature * law of nature/laws of nature * let nature take its course * Mother Nature * nature morte * nature preserve * nature reserve * nature strip * nature study * nature worship * second nature (nature)


  • (obsolete) To endow with natural qualities.
  • Statistics



    * 1000 English basic words ----