re·​gen·​cy | \ ˈrē-jən(t)-sē How to pronounce regency (audio) \
plural regencies

Definition of regency

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the office, jurisdiction, or government of a regent or body of regents
2 : a body of regents
3 : the period of rule of a regent or body of regents



Definition of Regency (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or characteristic of the styles of George IV's regency as Prince of Wales during the period 1811–20

Keep scrolling for more

When Was the regency Period?

In Britain, the years from the time when George III was declared insane until his death (1811–1820) are known as the Regency period, since in these years his son, the future George IV, served as Prince Regent, or acting monarch. (Sometimes the term covers the period up to the end of George IV's own reign in 1830.) The Regency is remembered for its elegant architecture and fashions, its literature (especially the works of Jane Austen), and its politics. Today hotels, furniture, and businesses on both sides of the Atlantic carry the name "Regency" to identify with the period's style, and hundreds of modern romance novels—called simply "Regencies"—have been set in the period.

Examples of regency in a Sentence

Noun The people supported the regency. Peace was restored during the regency. Adjective an example of Regency furniture
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Over eight days in late March, more than 14,000 people hopped on almost 900 buses from Jakarta, the capital, to Wonogiri regency in central Java. The Economist, "Muddled mudik messages As covid-19 spreads, Indonesia’s president has an unhappy Eid," 24 May 2020 Jakarta, a city of more than 10m people, secured approval on April 10th; since then at least 20 provinces and regencies have followed suit. The Economist, "Muddled mudik messages As covid-19 spreads, Indonesia’s president has an unhappy Eid," 24 May 2020 Stardust, the David Bowie biopic starring regency Emma. hunk Johnny Flynn, was supposed to have its premiere at the Tribeca Festival Festival. Kathryn Lindsay,, "In Weird Times, Johnny Flynn As David Bowie Is Exactly What We Need," 16 Apr. 2020 This continued throughout his regency, which lasted until his father died in 1820, after which he was crowned George IV. Phil Boucher,, "Queen Elizabeth Retiring? Five Times a Regent Has Taken Over the Throne," 6 Dec. 2019 The regencies of Donggala, Sigi and Parigi Moutong — with a combined population of 1.2 million — had yet to be fully assessed. Niniek Karmini, The Seattle Times, "Desperation everywhere, aid slow to reach Indonesia victims," 1 Oct. 2018 Recently, there was significant speculation that the queen would appoint her oldest son, Prince Charles, to a regency role, handing day-to-day management of the royal family to him sometime around her 95th birthday. Kayleigh Roberts, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Royal Family Issued a Rare Response to the Rumors That Queen Elizabeth Will Retire at 95," 6 Dec. 2019 Authorities have restricted mobile data services in Wamena regency to prevent the spread of hoaxes, the communications ministry said. Arys Aditya,, "At Least 26 Killed as Indonesia’s Papua Rocked by Violence," 23 Sep. 2019 For those wondering, regency romances take place around the early 1800s., "Gretna Green kept showing up in the romance novels I read, so I showed up in Gretna Green - The Boston Globe," 25 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'regency.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of regency


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1811, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about regency

Time Traveler for regency

Time Traveler

The first known use of regency was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for regency

Last Updated

15 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Regency.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Aug. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for regency


How to pronounce Regency (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of regency

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a government or period of time in which a person (called a regent) rules in place of a king or queen



English Language Learners Definition of Regency (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or like the styles in Britain during the period 1811-20

More from Merriam-Webster on regency

Spanish Central: Translation of regency

Comments on regency

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


Test Your Vocabulary

July 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • papercraft sunset
  • Which is a synonym of mien?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!