rue

verb
\ ˈrü How to pronounce rue (audio) \
rued; ruing

Definition of rue

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

: to feel penitence, remorse, or regret for

intransitive verb

: to feel sorrow, remorse, or regret

rue

noun (1)

Definition of rue (Entry 2 of 3)

: regret, sorrow with rue my heart is laden— A. E. Housman

rue

noun (2)

Definition of rue (Entry 3 of 3)

: a European strong-scented perennial woody herb (Ruta graveolens of the family Rutaceae, the rue family) that has bitter leaves used medicinally

Synonyms for rue

Synonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Did you know?

Noun (1)

If you remember your high school French, or if you've ever strolled down the Rue de Rivoli in Paris, you may have the notion that the English word rue is somehow connected to the French word for "street." In actuality, the French and English words are not related at all. The English rue is originally from the Old English word hrēow, meaning "sorrow." Used as both a noun and, more frequently, a verb, rue is very old, dating back to before the 12th century.

Examples of rue in a Sentence

Verb He must be ruing his decision now. I rue the day I agreed to this stupid plan.

First Known Use of rue

Verb

12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Noun (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rue

Noun (1)

Middle English rewe, from Old English hrēow; akin to Old High German hriuwa sorrow

Noun (2)

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin ruta, from Greek rhytē

Learn More About rue

Time Traveler for rue

Time Traveler

The first known use of rue was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Listen to Our Podcast About rue

Dictionary Entries Near rue

ruds

rue

rue anemone

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for rue

Cite this Entry

“Rue.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rue. Accessed 1 Dec. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for rue

rue

verb

English Language Learners Definition of rue

: to feel sorrow or regret for (something)

rue

verb
\ ˈrü How to pronounce rue (audio) \
rued; ruing

Kids Definition of rue

: to feel sorrow or regret for You'll rue the day you crossed me.

rue

noun
\ ˈrü How to pronounce rue (audio) \

Medical Definition of rue

: a strong-scented perennial woody herb (Ruta graveolens of the family Rutaceae, the rue family) that has bitter leaves used in medicine

More from Merriam-Webster on rue

Nglish: Translation of rue for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rue for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about rue

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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