Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

rein

play
noun \ˈrān\

Simple Definition of rein

  • : a strap that is fastened to a device (called a bridle) placed on the head of an animal (such as a horse) and that is used to guide and control the animal

  • : the ability to limit or control something

  • : the power to guide or control someone or something

Full Definition of rein

  1. 1 :  a strap fastened to a bit by which a rider or driver controls an animal —usually used in plural

  2. 2 a :  a restraining influence :  check <kept a tight rein on the proceedings> b :  controlling or guiding power —usually used in plural <the reins of government>

  3. 3 :  opportunity for unhampered activity or use <gave full rein to her imagination>

Examples of rein

  1. He has people working for him, but he has a tight rein on every part of the process.

  2. <after the president resigned, the vice president stepped in and took the reins of the company>



Illustration of rein

Origin of rein

Middle English reine, from Anglo-French resne, reine, from Vulgar Latin *retina, from Latin retinēre to restrain — more at retain


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Equestrian Terms


2

rein

verb

Definition of rein

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to control or direct with or as if with reins

  3. 2 :  to check or stop by or as if by a pull at the reins <reined in her horse> <couldn't rein his impatience>

  4. intransitive verb
  5. 1 archaic :  to submit to the use of reins

  6. 2 :  to stop or slow up one's horse or oneself by or as if by pulling the reins



15th Century

First Known Use of rein

15th century



REIN Defined for Kids

1

rein

play
noun \ˈrān\

Definition of rein

  1. 1 :  a line or strap that is attached at either end of the bit of a bridle and is used to control an animal —usually used in pl.

  2. 2 :  an influence that slows, limits, or holds back <The parents kept their child under a tight rein.>

  3. 3 :  controlling or guiding power <the reins of government>




2

rein

play
verb

Definition of rein

reinedrein·ing

  1. :  to check, control, or stop by or as if by reins <He reined in his horse.> <Rein in your anger.>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up rein? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 11, 2016

the holder of an office

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

16.96 pounds 100 pounds 196.5 pounds 2.2 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ