Reole (spelled Liore in the 2009 anime and Lior in the 2003 anime’s English dub) is one of the first places visited by the Elric brothers in their quest for the Philosopher's Stone. The State Military's lack of oversight in Reole, combined with the strong religious sense of the citizens (in this sense Reole is similar to Ishval), made it possible for an ambitious man named Father Cornello to institute a sort of theocratic government with himself as the unquestioned ruler. Fashioning himself as a prophet of Leto, the solar god of Reole, and as a miracle worker, Cornello promised riches and everlasting life, even resurrection of dead loved ones, for those who followed him. Though the people of Reole believed he could truly perform miracles, Cornello was merely performing alchemy, using a small Philosopher's Stone, mounted on a ring he wore, to violate the Law of Equivalent Exchange. This attracted the attention of the Elric brothers when they visited Reole, as they initially thought what he had on his ring was what they were looking for.
Another notable inhabitant of Reole is Rosé Thomas, a follower of Cornello until Edward showed her the truth and deposed Cornello from his seat of power. Rosé went on to assume a more active role in the small Reole society, leading the people after Cornello's fall from grace and through the civil conflict that consumed the city in its wake.
Though Alphonse and Ed believed they had managed to overthrow Cornello's theocratic regime and free the city, the two brothers had no idea until much later that in many ways they only made things worse. When Lust, the Homunculus who had originally given Cornello the incomplete Philosopher's Stone he wielded, learned of Cornello's failure, she refused to equip him again with a Stone and allowed Gluttony to eat him. Envy, a shapeshifting Homunculus, impersonated Cornello and took his place, claiming that the Cornello that had just been deposed was an impostor and that he was the true prophet. Cornello's followers were now divided.