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American English: /rul/
British English: /ruːl/

Translation of rule in Spanish:


  • 1 countable (regulation, principle) to observe/break the rules
    observar or acatar/infringir las reglas or normas
    a set of rules
    un reglamento
    the rules of tennis
    el reglamento del tenis
    it's against the rules to take photographs in here
    está prohibido sacar fotos aquí
    rules and regulations to bend or stretch the rules
    apartarse un poco de las reglas
    the rules of the game
    las reglas del juego
    the rule of three
    la regla de tres
    to work to rule (in workplace disputes)
    hacer huelga de celo (Spain)
    trabajar a reglamento (Southern Cone)
    rule of thumb
    regla general
    as a rule of thumb
    como regla general
    my rule of thumb would be …
    como regla general yo diría que …
    Example sentences
    • One can demonstrate to skeptics the explicit rules which govern a skill, or a game, but not those which govern an art.
    • He said he did not understand the document explaining rules and procedures for taxi drivers from the council.
    • These managers rode roughshod over the rules that govern corporate activity and betrayed the trust of the investors.
    Example sentences
    • Silicon Valley is still operating under the rules and values I described nearly three years ago.
    • It is a descriptive fact that some people do eat peas with a knife, just as many speakers of English do not follow the rules of prescriptive grammars.
    • To get through it unscathed, we all have to play by our own rules as much as possible.
  • 2 (general practice, habit) (no plural) as a rule the general rule is that I get home first
    por regla general or generalmente soy yo quien llega primero a casa
    corruption seems to be the rule these days
    la corrupción parece ser la norma hoy en día
    I make it a rule to reply promptly to letters
    tengo por norma contestar las cartas enseguida
    Example sentences
    • It's become the norm rather than the rule, and it does nothing to enhance the credibility of the medical profession.
    • Starvation is mercifully the exception rather than the rule - when it still exists, it is the result of social inequality rather than an absolute failure to produce food.
    • There was a time, decades ago, when third-level education was the exception rather than the rule in Irish society; that is no longer the case.
  • 3 uncountable
    (government) gobierno (masculine)
    (of monarch) reinado (masculine)
    it was under foreign/Ottoman rule
    estaba bajo dominio extranjero/bajo el dominio otomano
    the rule of law they moved from military to civilian rule
    pasaron de un gobierno militar a uno civil
    the rule of the Tudors
    el reinado de los Tudor
    majority 1 1
    Example sentences
    • It puts the Republicans in a strange position, because they are in favor of local control and local rule, and here it is on television, local democracy in action.
    • During its sixty years of colonial rule, Britain controlled the population by fomenting regional and ethnic divisions.
    • Lasting only ten months before Spain resumed control, Britain's rule was of short duration.
  • 4 countable (measure)
    Example sentences
    • The plastic template contains rules, measures and a hole-punching guide.
    • Bench rules were often made of maple, log and board rules of hickory, and blacksmith's rules and counter measures of brass.
    • When there are bubbles, cut into the veneer with a sharp razor blade using a steel rule for guidance.

transitive verb

  • 1 (govern, control)
    you mustn't let that rule your life
    no debes permitir que tu vida quede supeditada a eso
    Example sentences
    • Previous governments had ended quickly and violently, the people wanted to be ruled over by a single capable man.
    • But the Ruthenians of Galicia had no wish to be ruled over by Poles and drew close to the Czechs in defence of Austro-Slavism.
    • Ancient Egypt declined, was overrun and thereafter ruled by foreign powers.
    Example sentences
    • There are times when you'll have every right to be angry, but you should never let that emotion rule you, or guide you.
    • Embarrassment and anger ruled her actions now.
    • Essentially, nobody knew what was going on, and emotions were ruling some heads that should have been kept cooler.
  • 2 (pronounce) the committee ruled that there were no grounds for dismissal
    la comisión dictaminó que no había causal de despido
    Example sentences
    • Nearly simultaneously, however, a federal district court ruled that an Ohio city could be sued for discriminatory effects.
    • A state appellate court ruled that federal law pre-empted the state claims.
    • In a case decided in 1950 the Brussels Court Martial had already ruled that torture in time of armed conflict was prohibited by a customary international law rule.
  • 3 (draw)
    trazar con una regla
    ruled paper
    papel (masculine) con renglones
    Example sentences
    • Written on ruled paper, the letter was found in a pile of papers at the Greens's home in Gloucestershire.
    • A workhorse of a machine was busy feeding a swath of yellow paper from one of these rolls, mechanically ruling the paper with calibrated pins dipped in blue ink.
    • Robin got a map from the Land Office with a lot of lines ruled on it, from which the position of our holding could be deduced.

intransitive verb

  • 1 1.1 (govern)
    to rule over somebody
    gobernar a alguien
    reinar sobre alguien
    United rules OK (British)
    ¡viva or arriba (el) United!
    1.2 (predominate, be current)
    Example sentences
    • Even in India, its birthplace, where it has been ruling supreme for the last 3,000 years, it has not been able to permeate the masses.
    • National Hunt racing rules supreme in this country.
    • But if you visit The Venue on other than a weekend night, when music rules supreme, you will find though that there is more to this pub than just music.
  • 2 (pronounce)to rule (on something)
    fallar or resolver (en algo)
    the court is expected to rule (on the case) this week
    se espera que el tribunal falle or resuelva (en el caso) esta semana
    to rule against/in favor of somebody/something
    fallar or resolver en contra/a favor de alguien/algo

Phrasal verbs

rule off

verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object
separar con una línea

rule out

verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object
(course of action)
hacer imposible
his resignation cannot be ruled out
no se puede descartar la posibilidad de que dimita
their financial problems ruled out any expansion
sus problemas financieros hacían imposible cualquier tipo de expansión
his injury rules him out for tomorrow's game
su lesión lo excluye del partido de mañana
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