1 : to some degree or extent

Yesterday was a rather [=fairly] hot day.

That sounded rather [=quite a bit] like thunder.

rather [=quite] common flower

— often used to make a statement less forceful

He has been spending rather a lot of money lately.

She rather likes chocolate.

To tell you the truth, I rather think you are wrong.

You’re driving rather fast, don’t you think

2 a — used to introduce a statement that indicates what is true after you have said what is not true

I don’t like chocolate—rather, I love chocolate.

What matters is not how often you call, but rather what you say.

It wasn’t red but rather a shade of bright orange.

b — used to introduce a statement that corrects what you have just said

We can take the car, or rather, the van.

My father, or rather, my stepfather, will be visiting soon.