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A reign is the period of a person's or dynasty's occupation of the office of monarch of a nation (e.g., Saudi Arabia, Belgium, Andorra), of a people (e.g., the Franks, the Zulus) or of a spiritual community (e.g., Catholicism, Tibetan Buddhism, Nizari Ismailism).[1] In most hereditary monarchies and some elective monarchies (e.g., Holy Roman Empire) there have been no limits on the duration of a sovereign's reign or incumbency, nor is there a term of office. Thus, a reign usually lasts until the monarch dies, unless the monarchy itself is abolished or the monarch abdicates or is deposed.

In elective monarchies, there may be a fixed period of time for the duration of the monarch's tenure in office (e.g., Malaysia).

The term of a reign can be indicated with the abbreviation "r." (for Latin rexit) after a sovereign's name,[2] such as the following:

George VI, King of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions, Emperor of India (r. 1936–1952)

Regnal periods[edit]

Notable[clarification needed] reigns have included the following.

End of reign[edit]

A reign can be ended in several ways:


Abolition of monarchy[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "reign - definition of reign in English | Oxford Dictionaries". Oxford Dictionaries | English. Archived from the original on September 25, 2016. Retrieved 2017-04-09.
  2. ^ Robbins, John Fonseca (2015-08-31). Fonseca Robbins´Lexicon. Joinville: Clube de Autores. p. 238.