Reign vs Rein

As with other homophones or words having the same pronunciation but different meanings, origins, or spelling, the terms reign and rein often cause confusion among writers. Despite their similar sounds, these two have different uses and meanings that you may have mixed up before. Let us guide you with deciding which term is best suited for your sentence.

The word reign can be used as a noun referring to “the period during which a sovereign rules.”

NFC North preview: New faces abound; same old Packers reign?

EastEnders spoilers: Steven Beale’s reign of TERROR could go ‘FULL EVIL’, star reveals

Taylor Swift ends ‘Despacito”s 16-week reign at US number one

It may also be used as a verb which means “to hold royal office; rule as king or queen.”

Fire Crews Dig Lines To Reign In Umpqua North Complex
Jefferson Public Radio

Amateur boxing president Wu’s reign set to end as federations back opponents
The Guardian

The sun will reign during Labor Day weekend in Denver
Denver Post

On the other hand, the term rein is used as a noun referring to “a long, narrow strap attached at one end to a horse’s bit, typically used in pairs to guide or check a horse while riding or driving.”

To Turn Faster, Brittni Raflowitz Has Taken One Hand Off The Reins
The Chronicle of the Horse

Easterby right to feel aggrieved as BHA deem rein a potential risk
Racing Post

The ex-boss of Brown Thomas is taking over the reins at Dublin Airport
The Journal

However, it may also serve as a verb which means “to check or guide by pulling on its reins.”

China has ‘most responsibility’ to rein in North Korea, says Turnbull
The Guardian

FDA’s Gottlieb Wants To Rein In Risk Info In Drug Ads, But Will He Succeed?

Chaos is constant with twin toddlers. How can I rein it in?
Washington Post

Now that you have a learned the different uses and spellings of reign and rein, it will be easier for you to incorporate them into your writing. Remember that a king needs good reins over his people to make sure that his reign will continue for the years to come.