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Lewis : principium

principium, princĭpĭum, ii, n. princeps, a beginning, commencement, origin (class.; syn.: primordia, initium). In gen.: origo principii nulla est: nam ex principio oriuntur omnia, Cic. Tusc. 1, 23, 54: quid est cujus principium aliquod sit, nihil sit extremum? id. N. D. 1, 8, 20: nec principium, nec finem habere, id. Sen. 21, 78: cujus criminis neque principium invenire, neque evolvere exitum possum, id. Cael. 23, 56: hic fons, hoc principium est movendi, id. Rep. 6, 25, 27: bellorum atque imperiorum, id. Balb. 3, 9: principium pontis, Tac. A. 1, 69: principio lucis, at daybreak, Amm. 25, 5, 1: in principiis dicendi, at the commencement of a speech, Cic. de Or. 1, 26, 121; so of a declaration in a lawsuit, Juv. 6, 245: suave quoddam principium dicendi, Amm. 30, 4, 19: principia ducere ab aliquo, to derive, deduce: omnium rerum magnarum principia a dis immortalibus ducuntur, id. Vatin. 6, 14: principium urbis, id. Off. 1, 17, 54: scribendi recte sapere est et principium et fons, Hor. A. P. 309: omne principium huc refer, id. C. 3, 6, 6: a Jove principium, Verg. E. 3, 60: anni, Liv. 1, 4: a sanguine Teucri Ducere principium, Ov. M. 13, 705: capessere, to begin, Tac. A. 15, 49.—Adverb.: principio, a principio, in principio, at or in the beginning, at first: principio ... postea, etc., Cic. Div. 2, 35, 75: principio generi animantium omni est a naturā tributum, ut se tueatur, id. Off. 1, 4, 11; id. Tusc. 2, 22, 53; id. Fin. 1, 6, 17; Ter. Eun. 5, 8, 39; id. And. 3, 3, 38; Verg. A. 6, 214; Cic. Off. 3, 5, 21; so, a principio: ac vellem a principio te audissem, etc., id. Att. 7, 1, 2: dixeram a principio, de re publicā ut sileremus, id. Brut. 42, 157: in principio, id. de Or. 1, 48, 210: principio ut, as soon as, Plaut. Merc. prol. 40; v. Ritschl ad h. l.

Rarely of the boundaries of a country or people: adusque principia Carmanorum, Amm. 23, 6, 74.

In partic. Plur., beginnings, foundations, principles, elements (class.): bene provisa et diligenter explorata principia ponantur, Cic. Leg. 1, 13, 37: juris, id. ib. 1, 6, 18: naturae, id. Off. 3, 12, 52; for which: principia naturalia, id. Fin. 3, 5, 17; cf. id. ib. 2, 11, 35: principia rerum, ex quibus omnia constant, first principles, elements, id. Ac. 2, 36, 117.

Prov.: obsta principiis (cf. the French: ce n'est que le premier pas qui coute), Ov. R. Am. 91.

That makes a beginning, that votes first: tribus principium fuit, pro tribu Q. Fabius primus scivit, Lex Thoria, Rudorff. p. 142; Lex Appar. ap. Haubold, Moment. Leg. p. 85; Plebissc. ap. Front. Aquaed. 129: Faucia curia fuit principium, was the first to vote, Liv. 9, 38 fin.— In gen., a beginner, originator, founder, ancestor (poet.): Graecia principium moris fuit, Ov. F. 2, 37: mihi Belus avorum Principium, ancestor, progenitor, Sil. 15, 748.—Here, too, prob. belongs PRINCIPIA SACRA, Æneas and his successors in Lavinium, ancestors whom the Latins and Romans honored as deities, Inscr. Orell. 2276.

In milit. lang.: princĭpĭa, ōrum, n. The foremost ranks, the front line of soldiers, the front or van of an army: post principia, behind the front, Liv. 2, 65; cf.: hic ero post principia, inde omnibus signum dabo, Ter. Eun. 4, 7, 11: post principia paulatim recedunt, Sisenn. ap. Non. 135, 31: deinde ipse paulatim procedere; Marium post principia habere, Sall. J. 50, 2: traversis principiis, in planum deducit, id. ib. 49, 6: equites post principia collocat, Liv. 3, 22; Tac. H. 2, 43.

The staff-officers, members of the council of war (post-class.): mittere principia, Front. Strat. 2, 5, 30: a principiis salutari, Treb. Pol. Trig. Tyr. 10: advocatis legionum principiis et turmarum, Amm. 25, 5, 1; Cod. 12, 47, 1.

A large open space in a camp, in which were the tents of the general, lieutenants, and tribunes, together with the standards, and where speeches were made and councils held; the general's quarters: jura reddere in principiis, Liv. 28, 24: in principiis ac praetorio in unum sermones confundi, id. 7, 12: castrorum, Just. 11, 6, 6: in castris, Varr. R. R. 3, 4, 1: in principiis statuit tabernaculum, eoque omnes cotidie convenire (jussit), ut ibi de summis rebus consilia caperentur, Nep. Eum. 7, 2; Suet. Oth. 1; 6; Flor. 3, 10, 12: primores centurionum et paucos militum in principia vocat, Tac. H. 3, 13; 1, 48; Dig. 49, 16, 12; cf. Front. Strat. 4, 1, 16.

Precedence, preference, the first place: principium ergo, columenque omnium rerum preti margaritae tenent, Plin. 9, 35, 54, § 106.

Plur., selections, selected passages: principiorum libri circumferuntur, quia existimatur pars aliqua etiam sine ceteris esse perfecta, Plin. Ep. 2, 5, 12.

In partic., mastery, dominion (post-class.): ἀρχή, magisterium, magistratus, praesidatus, principium, Gloss. Philox.: in Graeco principii vocabulum, quod est ἀρχή, non tantum ordinativum, sed et potestativum capit principatum, Tert. adv. Hermog. 19.