Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
- And not.
- Used to indicate that the following alternative is less preferred.
2013 June 8, “Obama goes troll-hunting”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8839, page 55:
- According to this saga of intellectual-property misanthropy, these creatures [patent trolls] roam the business world, buying up patents and then using them to demand extravagant payouts from companies they accuse of infringing them. Often, their victims pay up rather than face the costs of a legal battle.
- I'd like to go home early rather than risk the roads later.
to indicate that the following alternative is less preferred
- instead of; in preference to.
- I'd like a dog rather than a cat.
instead of, in preference to