Definition of quite adverb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//kwaɪt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//kwaɪt//
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  1. 1  (British English) (not used with a negative) to some degree synonym fairly, pretty quite big/good/cold/warm/interesting He plays quite well. I quite like opera. When quite is used with an adjective before a noun, it comes before a or an. You can say:It’s quite a small house orTheir house is quite small but notIt’s a quite small house.
  2. 2  to the greatest possible degree synonym completely, absolutely synonym entirely quite delicious/amazing/empty/perfect This is quite a different problem. I'm quite happy to wait for you here. (British English) Flying is quite the best way to travel. It wasn't quite as simple as I thought it would be. Quite frankly, I don't blame you. I've had quite enough of your tantrums. Are you quite sure? I quite agree. I don't quite know what to do next. Quite apart from all the work, he had financial problems. (British English) The theatre was not quite (= was almost) full. It's like being in the Alps, but not quite. ‘I almost think she prefers animals to people.’ ‘Quite right too,’ said Bill. ‘I'm sorry to be so difficult.’ ‘That's quite all right.’
  3. 3  to a great degree; very; really You'll be quite comfortable here. I can see it quite clearly. (North American English) ‘You've no intention of coming back?’ ‘I'm quite sorry, but no, I have not.’ Which Word?quite / fairly / rather / prettyLook at these examples: The exam was fairly difficult. The exam was quite difficult. The exam was rather difficult. Quite is a little stronger than fairly, and rather is a little stronger than quite. Rather is not very common in North American English; pretty has the same meaning and this is used in informal British English too:The exam was pretty difficult. In British English quite has two meanings:I feel quite tired today(= fairly tired). With adjectives that describe an extreme state (‘non-gradable’ adjectives) it means ‘completely’ or ‘absolutely’:I feel quite exhausted. With some adjectives, both meanings are possible. The speaker’s stress and intonation will show you which is meant:Your essay is quite good(= fairly good—it could be better);Your essay is quite good(= very good, especially when this is unexpected). In North American English quite usually means something like ‘very’, not ‘fairly’ or ‘rather’. Pretty is used instead for this sense.
  4. 4(formal quite so) (British English) used to agree with somebody or show that you understand them ‘He's bound to feel shaken after his accident.’ ‘Quite.’ ‘It’s not something we want to have talked about.’ ‘Quite so.’
  5. Word OriginMiddle English: from the obsolete adjective quite, variant of quit.Extra examples ‘I’m sorry to be so difficult.’ ‘ That’s quite all right. ’ Are you quite sure about that? By then I had done quite enough. Even quite young children can manage it. He’s quite a good player. Her children are still quite young. I don’t quite know what to do next. I quite agree. I see him quite often. I think it’s quite likely we’ll win. I went to bed quite late last night. It wasn’t quite as simple as I thought it would be. It’s like being in the Alps, but not quite. It’s quite a small room. It’s too risky, quite apart from the cost. Quite frankly, I couldn’t care less. The bottle is not quite empty. The room is quite small. The shoes were quite expensive. The two things are not quite the same. We are never quite sure what to expect. You’ll be quite comfortable here. quite delicious/​amazing/​perfectIdioms
    quite a/the something (informal quite some something)
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    used to show that a person or thing is particularly impressive or unusual in some way She's quite a beauty. We found it quite a change when we moved to London. He's quite the little gentleman, isn't he? It must be quite some car.
    used to emphasize that the opposite of what has been said is true I don't find him funny at all. Quite the contrary.
    quite a few (British English also a good few)
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     a fairly large number I've been there quite a few times.
    quite a lot (of something) (also British English, informal quite a bit)
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     a large number or amount of something They drank quite a lot of wine.
    1. 1a large amount of something She hasn't been seen for quite some time.
    2. 2(informal) = quite a/the something
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: quite