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Meaning & Definition of Rather in English





1. On the contrary

  • "Rather than disappoint the children, he did two quick tricks before he left"
  • "He didn't call
  • Rather (or instead), he wrote her a letter"
  • "Used english terms instead of latin ones"
  • rather
  • ,
  • instead

2. To some (great or small) extent

  • "It was rather cold"
  • "The party was rather nice"
  • "The knife is rather dull"
  • "I rather regret that i cannot attend"
  • "He's rather good at playing the cello"
  • "He is kind of shy"
  • rather
  • ,
  • kind of
  • ,
  • kinda
  • ,
  • sort of

3. More readily or willingly

  • "Clean it well, preferably with warm water"
  • "I'd rather be in philadelphia"
  • "I'd sooner die than give up"
  • preferably
  • ,
  • sooner
  • ,
  • rather

4. To a degree (not used with a negative)

  • "Quite tasty"
  • "Quite soon"
  • "Quite ill"
  • "Quite rich"
  • quite
  • ,
  • rather

Examples of using

The history of some words is a real masterpiece. For instance, kaput. The original word was the Latin "caput" - "a head"; and the way from "a head" to "the end of everything" is rather long.
I don't feel well and would rather stay at home today.
I'd rather have ice cream.