Answered By: Writing Center Last Updated: Apr 29, 2015 Views: 0
Quite usually means less than very but more than a little. Quite goes before a/an, such as: quite a nice day, quite an old house. Some times we use quite before a noun (without an adjective).
e.g.: I didn't expect to see them. It was quite a surprise.
We also use quite with some verbs, especially like and enjoy.
e.g.: I quite like tennis but it's not my favorite sport.
Quite also means completely, while not quite means not completely.
e.g.: Are you sure? Yes, quite sure.
I don't quite understand what you mean.
Rather is similar to quite. Often we use quite with a positive idea and rather mainly with negative words and negative ideas.
e.g.: She is quite intelligent but rather lazy.
When we use rather with positive words, it means "usually" or "surprisingly".
e.g.: 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.
The Learning Commons
140 William T. Jerome Library
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH 43403