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rather - definition and synonyms

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adverb, predeterminer     rather pronunciation in American English
Rather can be used in the following ways:
as an adverb (before an adjective or another adverb): I’m feeling rather tired.She’s been treated rather badly. (before a verb): He rather enjoys telling other people what to do.
as a predeterminer (followed by “a”): This is rather a good wine.
in the conjunction phrase rather than: It would be better to make a decision now, rather than leave it until later.
as a way of showing how a sentence is connected to what has already been said: His purpose was not so much to attack his rivals. Rather, it was to defend his own position.
  1. 1
    to a fairly large degree

    I realize that I’ve been rather stupid and selfish.

    Matt left rather suddenly without any explanation.

    He was rather a handsome boy.

    rather more/better/worse/bigger etc.:

    The problem is rather more complicated than we had expected.

    1. a.
      mainly spoken a little too much, or to a degree that is slightly too great

      Don’t you think she’s rather young to be traveling abroad on her own?

      It’s a good essay, but rather long.

  2. 2
    used for introducing a true statement after saying that another statement is not true

    The purpose of Paxton’s book was not to make accusations. Rather, it was to provide information on which accusations might be based.

    Our goal was not to punish the rich, but rather to bring justice to the poor.

  3. 3
    used for correcting what you have just said
    or rather:

    He couldn’t help us, or rather he didn’t want to.

    Who is Fred anyway, or rather who was he?

  4. 4
    British informal old-fashioned used for showing that you are very willing to do what someone has suggested

    “You’re coming to swim with us, Uncle Phil, aren’t you?” “Rather!”

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