Had 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:

  • Had rather — Had Had (h[a^]d), imp. & p. p. of {Have}. [OE. had, hafde, hefde, AS. h[ae]fde.] See {Have}. [1913 Webster] {Had as lief}, {Had rather}, {Had better}, {Had as soon}, etc., with a nominative and followed by the infinitive without to, are well… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • had\ rather — • had rather • had sooner v To choose to (do one thing instead of another thing); like better to; would prefer to. Used with an infinitive without to . My aunt invited me to the movies, but I said I had rather go on a picnic with the girls. I had …   Словарь американских идиом

  • had rather — ► had rather literary or archaic would rather. Main Entry: ↑rather …   English terms dictionary

  • had rather — phrasal see had liefer * * * had rather Would prefer • • • Main Entry: ↑have * * * would rather I had rather not see him …   Useful english dictionary

  • had rather — or[had sooner] {v.} To choose to (do one thing instead of another thing); like better to; would prefer to. Used with an infinitive without to . * /My aunt invited me to the movies, but I said I had rather go on a picnic with the girls./ * /I had… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • had rather — or[had sooner] {v.} To choose to (do one thing instead of another thing); like better to; would prefer to. Used with an infinitive without to . * /My aunt invited me to the movies, but I said I had rather go on a picnic with the girls./ * /I had… …   Dictionary of American idioms

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

  • had rather — literary or archaic would rather. → rather …   English new terms dictionary

  • had rather — would rather, prefers that, gives priority to …   English contemporary dictionary

  • had better, had rather — Had better is widely used in giving advice or issuing a mild threat: We had better get started before midnight. You had better apologize to me for that remark. The phrase had best can be substituted for had better in such expressions. Neither is… …   Dictionary of problem words and expressions

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