Use rather to specify a preference for one thing over another. Wouldn't you rather go to the movies than stay home and clean the house?

Rather can also be used to mean "on the contrary," or to introduce a contradiction. You didn't believe in ghosts — rather thinking there was a scientific explanation for any ghostly appearances — until you saw a ghost yourself. The adverb rather also means "to a certain degree." You might grudgingly admit that your mom's strange-sounding chocolate-avocado pudding was actually rather tasty.

Definitions of rather
  1. adverb
    more readily or willingly
    “I'd rather be in Philadelphia”
    synonyms: preferably, sooner
  2. adverb
    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”
    synonyms: kind of, kinda, sort of
  3. adverb
    to a degree (not used with a negative)
    synonyms: quite
  4. adverb
    on the contrary
    rather than disappoint the children, he did two quick tricks before he left”
    “he didn't call; rather, he wrote her a letter”
    synonyms: instead
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘rather'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
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