[ roo-ling ]
/ ˈru lɪŋ /


an authoritative decision, as one by a judge on a debated point of law.
the act of drawing straight lines with a ruler.
ruled lines.


governing or dominating: the ruling party.
controlling; predominating: the ruling factor in recovery from an illness.
widespread; prevalent: ruling prices; ruling values.

Origin of ruling

1175–1225; Middle English (gerund); see rule, -ing1, -ing2


non·rul·ing, noun, adjective

Definition for ruling (2 of 2)

Origin of rule

1175–1225; (noun) Middle English riule, reule < Old French riule < Latin rēgula straight stick, pattern (see regula); (v.) Middle English riwlen, reulen, rewellen < Old French riuler, rieuler, ruler < Late Latin rēgulāre, derivative of rēgula


synonym study for rule

1. See principle. 13. Rule, administer, command, govern, manage mean to exercise authoritative guidance or direction. Rule implies the exercise of authority as by a sovereign: to rule a kingdom. Administer places emphasis on the planned and orderly procedures used: to administer the finances of an institution. Command suggests military authority and the power to exact obedience; to be in command of: to command a ship. To govern is authoritatively to guide or direct persons or things, especially in the affairs of a large administrative unit: to govern a state. To manage is to conduct affairs, i.e., to guide them in a unified way toward a definite goal, or to direct or control people, often by tact, address, or artifice: to manage a business. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ruling

British Dictionary definitions for ruling (1 of 2)

/ (ˈruːlɪŋ) /


a decision of someone in authority, such as a judge
one or more parallel ruled lines


controlling or exercising authoritythe ruling classes
prevalent or predominant

British Dictionary definitions for ruling (2 of 2)

/ (ruːl) /



Derived forms of rule

rulable, adjective

Word Origin for rule

C13: from Old French riule, from Latin rēgula a straight edge; see regulate
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medicine definitions for ruling

[ rōōl ]


A usual, customary, or generalized course of action or behavior.
A generalized statement that describes what is true in most or all cases; a standard.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with ruling


In addition to the idioms beginning with rule

  • rule of thumb
  • rule out
  • rule the roost

also see:

  • as a rule
  • exception proves the rule
  • ground rules
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.