masc. proper name, from Old French Reinald (Modern French Renaut, Latinized as Reginaldus), a popular name among the Normans, from Old High German Reginald, the first element related to reckon, the second to Old English wealdan "to rule," from Proto-Germanic *waldan "to rule," source of wield, from PIE root *wal- "to be strong." Related: Reynolds.
acquired name (Russian, literally "debauchee") of Grigory Yefimovich Novykh (c. 1872-1916), mystic and faith healer who held sway over court of Nicholas II of Russia. His nickname is from his doctrine of "rebirth through sin," that true holy communion must be preceded by immersion in sin. His name has been used figuratively in English from 1937 for anyone felt to wield an insidious and corrupting influence.