The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
capital \cap"i*tal\ (k[a^]p"[i^]*tal), n. [Cf. L. capitellum and
capitulum, a small head, the head, top, or capital of a
column, dim. of caput head; F. chapiteau, OF. capitel. See
chief, and cf. cattle, chattel, chapiter, chapter.]
1. (Arch.) The head or uppermost member of a column,
pilaster, etc. It consists generally of three parts,
abacus, bell (or vase), and necking. See these terms, and
2. [Cf. F. capilate, fem., sc. ville.] (Geog.) The seat of
government; the chief city or town in a country; a
metropolis. "A busy and splendid capital" --Macauly.
3. [Cf. F. capital.] Money, property, or stock employed in
trade, manufactures, etc.; the sum invested or lent, as
distinguished from the income or interest. See Capital
stock, under Capital, a.
4. (Polit. Econ.) That portion of the produce of industry,
which may be directly employed either to support human
beings or to assist in production. --M'Culloch.
Note: When wealth is used to assist production it is called
capital. The capital of a civilized community includes
fixed capital (i.e. buildings, machines, and roads
used in the course of production and exchange) and
circulating capital (i.e., food, fuel, money, etc.,
spent in the course of production and exchange). --T.
5. Anything which can be used to increase one's power or
He tried to make capital out of his rival's
6. (Fort.) An imaginary line dividing a bastion, ravelin, or
other work, into two equal parts.
7. A chapter, or section, of a book. [Obs.]
Holy St. Bernard hath said in the 59th capital.
8. (Print.) See Capital letter, under Capital, a.
Active capital. See under Active,
Small capital (Print.), a small capital letter; informally
referred to (in the plural) as small caps; as, the
technical terms are listed in small caps. See under
To live on one's capital, to consume one's capital without
producing or accumulating anything to replace it.