1 : to some degree or extent
Yesterday was a rather [=fairly] hot day.
That sounded rather [=quite a bit] like thunder.
a 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.