What is the difference between Quite,Rather ?

What is the difference between 

Quite,Rather ?


1- Quite

    A. Quite = less than 'very' but 

more than 'a little'.


It's quite cold. You'd better wear your 


B- When we use Quite

Quite goes before a/an:

  quite a nice day (not 'a quite nice 

day'), quite an old house, quite a long 

Sometimes we use quite + noun 

(without an adjective):


I didn't expect to see them. It was 

quite a surprise.

We also use quite with some verbs, 

especially like and enjoy:


I quite like tennis but it's not my 

favourite sport.


Quite sometimes means 'completely


B. Rather is similar to quite. We use 

rather mainly with negative words and 

negative ideas:


Let's get a taxi. It's rather a long way 

to walk

Quite is also possible in these 


Often we use quite with a positive idea 

and rather with a negative idea:

   She's quite intelligent but rather lazy.

  When we use rather with positive 

words (nice/interesting etc.), it means 


These oranges are rather nice. Where 

did you get them?

Rather can go before or after a/an. So 

you can say:

a rather interesting book or rather an 

interesting book

    C. Quite also means 'completely'.  


  * 'Are you sure?' 'Yes, quite sure.' (= 

completely sure)

  Quite means 'completely' with a 

number of adjectives, especially:

  [sure, right, true, clear, different, 

incredible, amazing, certain, wrong, 

safe, obvious, unnecessary, 

extraordinary, impossible]

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