rulerule1 /ruːl/ ●●●S1W1 noun1about what is allowed [countable]RULE/REGULATION an official instruction that says how things must be done or what is allowed, especially in a game, organization, or jobrule ofthe rules of the gameunder the rules/according to the rulesUnder the rules, the company must publish its annual accounts.2about what you should do [countable] what you should do in a particular situation, or a statement about thisThere are no hard and fast rules (=clear and definite rules) about what to wear to classes.rule ofThere are two basic rules of survival.The rule is: if you feel any pain you should stop exercising immediately.3normal/usual [singular] something that is normal or usually trueas a (general) ruleAs a general rule most students finish their coursework by the end of May.Early marriage used to be the rule in that part of the world.A series of payments used to be the exception rather than the rule.Unfortunately there is an exception to every rule.4government [uncountable]GOVERENMENT the government of a country or area by a particular group of people or using a particular systemunder ... rulepeople living under communist rulethe end of colonial rulea period of military ruledirect rule from Westminsterthe restoration of majority rule (=government by the party that most people have voted for) to Northern Ireland5in grammar/science etc [countable]SLG a statement about what is usually allowed in a particular system, such as the grammar of a language, or a sciencerule ofthe rules of English punctuation6 →the rule of law7 →the rules of natural justice8 →rule of thumb9 →make it a rule (to do something)10for measuring [countable] old-fashionedTMDHH a ruler →golden rule, ground rules, home rule, slide rule, → work to ruleat work1(32)COLLOCATIONSverbsbreak a rule (also violate a rule formal) (=not obey it)He had clearly broken the official rules.Any one who violates this rule will be severely punished.obey/follow a ruleShe wasn’t going to obey their silly rules.comply with/abide by/observe a rule formal (=obey it)All members must comply with the rules of the organization.There is little that one country can do if another fails to abide by the rules.We expect you to observe the general rules of conduct as set out below.stick to/go by the rules informal (=obey them)We all have to stick to the rules.make the rulesI’m only an assistant manager – I don’t make the rules.the rule says ...The rule says that you must be standing inside the line.the rule stipulates that ... formal (=it says that something must be done)The rules stipulate that clubs must field the strongest team available. the rule prohibits/forbids somethingThe rule forbids women from becoming members of the club.the rule requires (that) ... formal (=it says that people must do something)School rules required all girls to tie back their hair.the rule applies to somebody/something (=it concerns them)Everyone thinks that the rule doesn’t apply to them.play by the rules (=do what is expected and agreed)The system works well enough — as long as everyone plays by the rules.bend/stretch the rules (=allow someone to do something that is not normally allowed)They bend the rules to suit themselves.relax the rules (=make them less strict)Britain relaxed its immigration rules.tighten (up) the rules (=make them stricter)The EU has tightened the rules on the quality of drinking water.enforce a rule (=make sure that it is obeyed)The planning office does not always enforce its own rules.flout a rule (=break it, without trying to hide what you are doing)The party continues to flout its own rules.be bound by rules (=have to obey them)Solicitors are bound by strict rules that regulate their professional conduct.ADJECTIVES/NOUN + rulestrictThey have very strict rules about gambling.simpleThe rules of the game are quite simple.petty (=unreasonable rules about unimportant things)There are hundreds of petty rules.a school/prison/club etc ruleHe had broken one of the school rules.an unwritten rule (=a rule of behaviour that everyone in a group understands)There’s an unwritten rule that you never call an actor before 10 a.m. health and safety rulesYou should follow any health and safety rules which apply to your workplace.phrasesbe against the rules (=not be allowed)It was against the rules to talk in class.the rules concerning/governing/relating to something formal (=the rules about something)the rules governing food labelinga change in the rulesI didn’t realise that there had been a change in the rules.a breach of the rules formal (=something that is against the rules)a serious breach of the rulesrules and regulationsThe government keeps introducing more and more rules and regulations.rules are rules spoken (=a rule must be obeyed)Rules are rules and you have to abide by them.THESAURUSrule an instruction that says what people are allowed to do or not allowed to do, for example in a game, school, or companythe rules of baseballHe disobeyed the school rules.law an official rule that everyone in a country, city, or state must obeyIt is against the law to carry a concealed weapon.The law requires motorcyclists to wear helmets.regulation an official rule or order, which is part of a set of rules made by a government or organizationthe regulations for applying for a passportbuilding regulationsenvironmental regulations on air pollutionrestriction an official rule that limits what people can donew restrictions on immigrationThe government is planning to impose regulations on the amount of alcohol you can bring into the country.guidelines rules or instructions about the best way to do somethingthe Department of Health’s guidelines for a healthy dietguidelines for classroom teacherscode a set of rules that people or organizations agree to obey but are not forced to obeyThe school has a dress code for its students.the company’s code of conductstatute formal a law that has been officially approved by a parliament, council etc, and written downThe statute banned corporal punishment.ordinance American English a law, made by a city or town, that forbids or restricts an activityA local ordinance limited speed in the parks to ten miles an hour.
rulerule2 ●●●W2 verb1government [intransitive, transitive]GOVERENMENT to have the official power to control a country and the people who live there → governQueen Victoria ruled England for 64 years.African tribal societies were traditionally ruled by a council of elders.rule overAlexander the Great ruled over a huge empire.He announced that henceforth he would rule by decree (=make all the important decisions himself).► see thesaurus at control2control/influence [transitive]CONTROL if a feeling or desire rules someone, it has a powerful and controllinginfluence on their actionsthe passion for power and success which rules her life3court/law [intransitive always + adverb/preposition, transitive]SCT to make an official decision about something, especially a legal problem → decreerule thatThe judge ruled that she should have custody of the children.rule onThe Supreme Court has yet to rule on the case.rule in favour of/against somebody/somethingThe tribunal ruled in her favour.be ruled illegal/unlawful etcThis part of the bill was ruled unconstitutional. →ruling14 →rule the roost5 →rule somebody/something with a rod of iron6 →somebody/something rules7draw a line [transitive]LINE to draw a line using a ruler or other straightedgeRule a line under each answer. →overrule, → let your heart rule your headat heart1(2) →rule something/somebody ↔ out→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpus
rule• Anybody who could sew had a collection on show and fashionruled.• Ashley's life was ruled by her addiction to drugs.• At that time, Persia was divided into several provinces, ruled by local khans.• They were ruled by powerful clans.• In 1860, Italy was a collection of small states ruled by princes and dukes.• India was ruled by the British for a very long time.• The PolPotregimeruledCambodia from 1974 to 1978.• Henry VIII ruled England from 1509 to 1547.• Mary, Queen of Scots, only ruled for six years.• Golding said that, before she reaches any conclusions, she wants a full briefing on the court ruling from Gwinn.• Paper ruled into one-inch squares is used to practice writing Chinesecharacters.• Speculation that the DolphinCentre could be used has been ruled out by Mr Boyle who says it would be too expensive.• This does not rule out evolution by mutation and selection.• Why weren't they ruled out of order before they transgressed?• Spain ruled over Portugal from 1580 to 1640.• Motamid had died, leaving his son Mostain to rule over Saragossa.• Voting six to three, the court ruled that this ultimatethreatviolated states' rights.• While they ruled, the country remained isolated from the rest of the world.• The Medical Examiner's office ruled the death a murder.• Marcos ruled the Philippines for 20 years.• He ruled three lines under the title of his essay.• She divided the page into four by ruling two diagonal lines across it.rule by decree• Article 38 permits the government to rule by decree.• The powers allow it to rule by decree and declare a state of war.• Mr Gorbachev may well use his powers to rule by decree to push the reform through.rules ... life• Their torment is kept hidden, but rules their lives.be ruled illegal/unlawful etc• Publicly the banks have suggested that there could be direconsequences for the City should the deals be ruled illegal.• A further 40,000 boat people still waiting to be screened will almost certainly be ruled illegal as well.From Longman Business Dictionaryrulerule1 /ruːl/ noun1[countable] an official instruction that says how things should be done or what is allowedThe phone companies are working under new rules now.The company broke government rules to undercut other bids.company rules and regulations regarding sexual harassment → see alsoHague Rules →accounting rule →earnings rule2[uncountable] the government of a country by a particular group of people or using a particular systema constitution that formally ended one-party rule3work to ruleHUMAN RESOURCES to work less quickly or effectively than usual, but without breaking your employer’s rules, as a protestThe customs men are prohibited from striking, but some have worked to rule out of sympathy with the government workers.4be the rule to be the normal or usual thing to happen in a situationMonopoly business practices are the rule here and not the exception.rulerule2 verb [intransitive, transitive]1to have the official power to control a country or organizationa country that has been ruled by a dictator for three decadesEach bank would be ruled by a mix of outside directors.2LAWto make an official decision about something, especially a legal problemrule (that)The board ruled that the contract was valid and should be honored.rule againstThe court had ruled against the use of any unpublished works.rule in favour ofa court decision to rule in favour of the company →rule something → out→ See Verb table