Would rather
Rather Rath"er (r[a^][th]"[~e]r; 277), adv. [AS. hra[eth]or, compar. of hra[eth]e, hr[ae][eth]e, quickly, immediately. See {Rath}, a.] [1913 Webster] 1. Earlier; sooner; before. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

Thou shalt, quod he, be rather false than I. --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

A good mean to come the rather to grace. --Foxe. [1913 Webster]

2. More readily or willingly; preferably. [1913 Webster]

My soul chooseth . . . death rather than my life. --Job vii. 15. [1913 Webster]

3. On the other hand; to the contrary of what was said or suggested; instead. [1913 Webster]

Was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse. --Mark v. 26. [1913 Webster]

4. Of two alternatives conceived of, this by preference to, or as more likely than, the other; somewhat. [1913 Webster]

He sought throughout the world, but sought in vain, And nowhere finding, rather feared her slain. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

5. More properly; more correctly speaking. [1913 Webster]

This is an art Which does mend nature, change it rather, but The art itself is nature. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

6. In some degree; somewhat; as, the day is rather warm; the house is rather damp. [1913 Webster]

{The rather}, the more so; especially; for better reason; for particular cause. [1913 Webster]

You are come to me in happy time, The rather for I have some sport in hand. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

{Had rather}, or {Would rather}, prefer to; prefers to; as, he had rather, or would rather go than stay. ``I had rather speak five words with my understanding than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue.'' --1 Cor. xiv. 19. See {Had rather}, under {Had}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • would rather — phrase used for saying that you would prefer to do something or that you would prefer that something happened I’d rather you didn’t mention this matter to anyone else. He doesn’t want to learn – he’d rather stay at home and play video games.… …   Useful english dictionary

  • would rather — used for saying that you would prefer to do something or that you would prefer that something happened I d rather you didn t mention this matter to anyone else. He doesn t want to learn – he d rather stay at home and play video games. would… …   English dictionary

  • would rather — See had better, had rather …   Dictionary of problem words and expressions

  • would rather — indicating one s preference in a particular matter. → rather …   English new terms dictionary

  • would rather … (than) — would rather… (than) idiom (usually reduced to d rather) would prefer to • She d rather die than give a speech. • ‘Do you want to come with us?’ ‘No, I d rather not.’ • Wo …   Useful english dictionary

  • would rather die — or would die first used for emphasizing that you refuse to do something …   English dictionary

  • would rather die — would die first phrase used for emphasizing that you refuse to do something Thesaurus: way of saying that you will not do somethingsynonym Main entry: die …   Useful english dictionary

  • Us Tareyton smokers would rather fight than switch! — is an enduring slogan which appeared in magazine, newspaper, and television advertisements for Tareyton cigarettes from 1963 until 1981. It was the American Tobacco Company s most visible ad campaign in the 1960s and 1970s.BeginningsThe slogan… …   Wikipedia

  • had or would rather — idi had or would rather, to prefer that or to: I had much rather we not stay[/ex] …   From formal English to slang

  • rather — 1. Rather is common in BrE as a so called ‘downtoner’, i.e. an adverb that reduces the effect of the following adjective, adverb, or noun, as in It is rather expensive, You were driving rather fast, and He s rather a fool. With nouns, the… …   Modern English usage

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