Easily Confused Words: Rain vs. Reign

Rain and reign are easily confused words.

The spell-check application of most word processing software programs would not catch a slip-up of these two words. Spell-check is looking for words that aren’t in its dictionary, and words that resemble words in its dictionary but are possibly spelled wrong. Spell-check isn’t perfect. It doesn’t know and can’t guess what word you wanted or what word you meant, it can only judge the words on the page. If you used words that are all spelled correctly, it gives you a pass anyway.

Autocorrect suggests words that start with the same letters. It suggests what word you may want to save time, but quite often, its suggestions couldn’t be more off base and produces humorous results.

Rain has multiple forms.

  • Rain, the noun, means a weather event where water droplets fall from the skies.
  • Rain, the verb, means what’s happening when those droplets are falling from the sky.

Reign has multiple forms.

  • Reign, the noun, means the time period that a monarch ruled over his/her people.
  • Reign the verb, means to rule over a people.

The following story uses both words correctly:

Raymundo had a spectacular reign over his country. There was no war, the economy flourished, and their monarch had a exuberant spirit. His subjects often spied him literally dancing in the rain. 

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