Whether to use rather or whether, that is the question

by Sharon
(Ar)

These definitions still leave me confused.

Whether-(pronoun) used in expressing a choice or alternative.


Rather-(adverb) more willingly, more readily, by preference.


Example: Whether you buy from the neighbor store or a specialty shop from another country, you want the best value for your money.

Comments for Whether to use rather or whether, that is the question

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Sep 07, 2016
Which word whether or rather
by: Anonymous

Which word to use whether or rather it be a small or large issue.

From Audrey: In this case, use whether. Whether it be a small or large issue.

Jan 26, 2013
Not quite
by: Audrey

Your sentence is not quite correct. Here is why:

1. Cofetionery is not a word. Perhaps you mean confectionery.
Specially should be especially.

2. You need either "confectioneries are" or "the (or a) confectionery."

2. You are missing commas.
I think that cofetionery, at least for me, is gratifying, specially when rather a member of my family or a friend likes it.

3. You do not need the word rather.

My guess is that you meant to write

I think that the confectionary, at least for me, is gratifying, especially when a member of my family or a friend likes it.

PS. Strictly speaking, the opening "I think that" is unnecessary since the whole sentence is the writer's opinion.

Jan 25, 2013
please help me
by: Anonymous

I just wanted to know if this sentence is ok: I think that cofetionery at least for me is gratifying specially when rather a member of my family or a friend likes it.

Jul 05, 2008
Parts Of Speech
by: Audrey

Hello Sharon,

First of all, although you may be confused by the printed definitions, I doubt that you would ever put one of these words in place of the other. For example, I doubt that you would ever write

RATHER you buy from the neighbor store or a specialty shop from another country, you want the best value for your money.

That's because you can't replace one part of speech for another in a sentence. I'm sure you know the difference between nouns and verbs.

Here's an example of trying to replace one part of speech with another...

1. I saw two chairs and a table.

2. I saw two chairs and an eat.

You would never make that mistake because we can't replace a noun with a verb.

But you also said you had trouble with the definitions.

Here is my take on why that may be the case...

You are confusing having alternatives with having a preference for something.

The word WHETHER is about alternatives. Often we say, WHETHER OR NOT to signal that one might choose one thing or the other.

The word RATHER indicates a preference. I can say, I WOULD RATHER BE TALL. But I don't have a realistic alternative.

I hope this explanation helps.

Others may have additional insights.


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