Rath"er(r"r; 277), adv. [AS. hraor, compar. of hrae, hre, quickly, immediately. See Rath, a.]
1. Earlier; sooner; before.
Thou shalt, quod he, be rather false than I.Chaucer.
A good mean to come the rather to grace.Foxe.
2. More readily or willingly; preferably.
My soul chooseth . . . death rather than my life.Job vii. 15.
3. On the other hand; to the contrary of what was said or suggested; instead.
Was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse.Mark v. 26.
4. Of two alternatives conceived of, this by preference to, or as more likely than, the other; somewhat.
He sought throughout the world, but sought in vain,Dryden.
And nowhere finding, rather feared her slain.
5. More properly; more correctly speaking.
This is an artShak.
Which does mend nature, change it rather, but
The art itself is nature.
6. In some degree; somewhat; as, the day is
rather warm; the house is
The rather, the more so; especially; for better reason; for particular cause.
You are come to me in happy time,Shak.
The rather for I have some sport in hand.
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.
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Fri 14th December 2018