One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Perspective. The point where the principal ray meets the picture plane.
2Optics. Each of the two points at which the optic axis of a lens intersects the principal planes.
Late 16th century (in an earlier sense). From principal + point. In sense 1 after Middle French principal poinct.
principal point/ˌprɪnsɪpl ˈpɔɪnt/
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