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English definition of “quite”

quite

adverb     /kwaɪt/
B1 completely : The two situations are quite different. Are you quite sure you want to go? The colours almost match but not quite. I enjoyed her new book though it's not quite as good as her last one. Quite honestly / frankly , the thought of it terrified me.Complete and wholeVery and extreme not quite B2 used to express that you are not certain about something: I don't quite know what to say. I didn't quite catch what he said.UncertaintyHesitatingAchievable UK used to show agreement with someone's opinion : "You'd think he could spare some money - he's not exactly poor ." "Quite."Words and phrases expressing agreement and acceptance quite a/some sth used to say that someone or something is impressive , interesting , or unusual : That's quite a beard you've grown , young man! From a car manufacturer that, until quite recently , had very little experience in producing diesel engines at all, that's quite some achievement . quite the best, worst, etc. formal used for emphasis : It was quite the worst dinner I have ever had.Very and extremeComplete and wholeIntensifying expressions Grammar:Quiet or quite?Grammar:QuiteQuite is a degree adverb. It has two meanings depending on the word that follows it: ‘a little, moderately but not very’ and ‘very, totally or completely’:Grammar:Quite + gradable adjectives and adverbsWhen we use quite with a gradable adjective or adverb, it usually means ‘a little, moderately but not very’. It has a similar meaning to ‘rather’ or ‘fairly’:Grammar:Quite + non-gradable adjectives and adverbsWhen we use quite with a non-gradable adjective or adverb (an extreme adjective or adverb has a maximum and/or minimum, for example right – wrong), it usually means ‘very’, ‘totally’ or ‘completely’:Grammar:Quite + nounsWe can use quite + a/an before a noun to give it more emphasis or importance:Grammar:Quite a bit, quite a few, quite a lotWe often use quite with a bit, a few and a lot to refer to large amounts and quantities:Grammar:Quite + verbsGrammar:Not quite meaning ‘not completely’We often use not quite to mean ‘not completely’. We can use it with adjectives, adverbs, nouns, non-finite clauses, prepositional phrases and wh-clauses:
(Definition of quite adverb from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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