rather Definition

  • 1to a certain extent; somewhat
  • 2more willingly; preferably
  • 3used to express an opposite opinion or choice

Using rather: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "rather" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    I'm rather tired after the long walk.

  • Example

    I'd rather stay home than go out tonight.

  • Example

    Rather than go to the party, I think I'll stay in and read.

  • Example

    It's rather cold outside today.

  • Example

    I'd rather not talk about it if that's okay.

rather Synonyms and Antonyms

Phrases with rather

  • used to correct oneself or provide a more accurate description


    He wasn't my friend, or rather, we used to be friends but we haven't spoken in years.

  • instead of


    I decided to walk rather than take the bus.

  • prefer to


    I would rather stay home tonight.

Origins of rather

from Old English 'hrathor', meaning 'more quickly'


Summary: rather in Brief

The adverb 'rather' [ˈræðər] expresses a degree of something, often indicating a preference or willingness. It can also be used to express an opposite opinion or choice. Examples include 'I'm rather tired after the long walk,' and 'I'd rather stay home than go out tonight.' 'Rather' is often used with phrases like 'or rather' and 'rather than,' and with the idiom 'would rather,' which means 'prefer to.'

How do native speakers use this expression?