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definition of the word capital

by the Wiktionnary

From the Latin capitalis, "of the head." Use in trade and finance originated in Medieval economies when a common but expensive transaction involved trading heads of cattle.



capital (plural capitals)

  1. A city designated as a legislative seat by the government or some other authority, often the city in which the government is located; otherwise the most important city within a country or a subdivision of it.
    Washington D.C. is the capital of the United States of America.
    The Welsh government claims that Cardiff is Europe’s youngest capital.
  2. (economics) Money and wealth. The means to acquire goods and services, especially in a non-barter system.
    He does not have enough capital to start a business.
  3. (economics) Already-produced durable goods available for use as a factor of production, such as steam shovels (equipment) and office buildings (structures).
  4. An uppercase letter.
  5. (architecture) The uppermost part of a column.

The homophone capitol refers only to a building, usually one that houses the legislative branch of a government, and often one located in a capital city.

Definition from Wiktionary
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