- 1One of a set of explicit or understood regulations or principles governing conduct within a particular activity or sphere: the rules of the game were understoodMore 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.
- 1.1A principle that operates within a particular sphere of knowledge, describing or prescribing what is possible or allowable: the rules of grammarMore example sentences
precept, principle, standard, axiom, truth, maxim
- 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.
- 1.2A code of practice and discipline for a religious order or community: the Rule of St. BenedictMore example sentences
- New-style communities based on a rule, first provided by St Augustine of Hippo, but refined and made more austere at the end of the eleventh century, emerged.
- Toward the end of his life, Benedict drew up his rule for this community.
- Benedict drew up a rule for the monastic communities which were based on needs and functions.
- 1.3Control of or dominion over an area or people: the revolution brought an end to British ruleMore 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.
- 1.4 (the rule) The normal or customary state of things: such accidents are the exception rather than the ruleMore 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.
- 2A strip of wood or other rigid material used for measuring length or marking straight lines; a ruler.More 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.
- 2.1A thin printed line or dash, generally used to separate headings, columns, or sections of text.More example sentences
- In accordance with guidelines for advertising labeling in print newspapers, a thin black rule was placed just after the sponsorship.
- 3 (Rules) Australian short for Australian Rules (football).
- 3.1 Law An order made by a judge or court with reference to a particular case only.More example sentences
- This is a rule made by the judges of the Supreme Court of Victoria in the exercise of their delegated legislative power.
- The land-value increment tax, on the other hand, is facing a serious setback by a rule of the constitutional court which could dwindle its viability.
- The case is an unusual one in that it does not appear to me that, despite these extraordinary delays, Mrs Anderson can be said ever to have been in breach of any rule or order of the court.
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- 1 [with object] Exercise ultimate power or authority over (an area and its people): Latin America today is ruled by elected politicians [no object]: the period in which Spain ruled over PortugalMore 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.
- 1.1(Of a feeling) have a powerful and restricting influence on (a person’s life): her whole life seemed to be ruled by fearMore 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.
- 1.2 [no object] Be a dominant or powerful factor or force: [with complement]: the black market rules supremeMore example sentences
prevail, predominate, be the order of the day, reign supreme• formal obtain
- 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.
- 1.3 [with clause] Pronounce authoritatively and legally to be the case: a federal court ruled that he was unfairly dismissed from his jobMore 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.
- 1.4 Astrology (Of a planet) have a particular influence over (a sign of the zodiac, house, aspect of life, etc.).More example sentences
- The moon rules my sign, maybe this is why I'm a night owl.
- Aries and Scorpio were ruled by the same planet, which was Mars, the war-god of passion, activity, and courage.
- The first sign in the Zodiac, you're ruled by Mars, the action planet, and are a natural leader and innovator.
- 2 [with object] Make parallel lines across (paper): (as adjective ruled) a sheet of ruled paperMore 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.
as a rule
- Usually, but not always.More example sentences
- Again, Aristotle's notion of the goal of tragedy is odd: do tragedies always, or even as a rule, purge their audience of pity and fear?
- Most men wear pleated trousers, which as a rule, should always have cuffs.
- Action thrillers contain lots of twists and turns as a rule, usually of a kind we have all seen a dozen times before.
make it a rule to do something
- Have as a habit or general principle to do something: I make it a rule never to mix business with pleasureMore example sentences
- I made it a rule to put down in writing, after every conversation, what had taken place.
- I've now made it a rule to take care of at least one niggling work-related task each day.
- Asked if he ever stopped, he answered that he and Ljubica tried to make it a rule to do so by ten o'clock at night, having begun more than twelve hours before.
rule of law
- The restriction of the arbitrary exercise of power by subordinating it to well-defined and established laws.More example sentences
- The Prime Minister overrides the rule of law and declares a coroner's enquiry unnecessary.
- That decision demonstrated that this country upholds the rule of law and basic human rights.
- It is a fundamental requisite of the rule of law that the law should be made known.
rule of thumb
- A broadly accurate guide or principle, based on experience or practice rather than theory.More example sentences
- I want to suggest that this is in fact a rather useful rule of thumb for linguists and philologists.
- Given that forecasts were so inaccurate, I thought it might be preferable to rely on projections based on simple rules of thumb.
- A widely adopted rule of thumb in crystallisation theory is that better crystals can be obtained using programmed cooling.
rule the roost
- Be in complete control.More example sentences
- Rather than a progressive process that inevitably led to Homo sapiens ruling the roost, Gee persuades the reader that evolution is based upon a random selection.
- Women don't need protection nowadays - they're the ones ruling the roost.
- Before you know it we will be ruling the roost again.
rule something out (or in)
- Exclude (or include) something as a possibility: the doctor ruled out appendicitisMore example sentences
exclude, eliminate, disregard; preclude, prohibit, prevent, disallow
- They are happy as long as I give it a try, give it my best before absolutely ruling it out as a possibility.
- Something in her voice sounded as if she hadn't ruled the possibility out.
- There have been a number of dog thefts in recent months and while we are not linking them specifically we don't rule this possibility out.
- More example sentences
- Those who like crisp rules tend to think rules are needed to have real law and think ruleless ‘judgment’ is not law.
- By the eighties, the ghetto had become a ruleless war zone, where people were their own worst enemies.
- The web is a terrible, confusing, violent, ruleless place that has run wild and cannot be harnessed and will never be placed under the benevolent, watchful eye of government!
Middle English: from Old French reule (noun), reuler (verb), from late Latin regulare, from Latin regula 'straight stick'.
Entry from British & World English dictionary
More definitions of ruleDefinition of Rule 43 in:
- The British & World English dictionary