Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

better

2 adverb
     
better2 S1 W1 [comparative of well]
1 to a higher standard or quality [≠ worse]:
He can speak French a lot better than I can.
Your bike will run better if you oil it.

➔ fare better

at fare2
2 to a higher degree [= more]:
She knows this town better than you do.
I think I like the red one better.
Potter is better known for his TV work.
3

had better

a) used to give advice about what someone should do or to say what you should do or need to do:
I'd better go and get ready.
I think you'd better ask Jo first.
Better just check she's okay.
You had better not tell Oliver (=it is not a good idea).
b) used to threaten someone:
You'd better keep your mouth shut about this.
! In speech, people usually shorten had to 'd, and may not pronounce it at all. But do not leave out had or 'd in writing: You'd better come here (NOT You better)!
4

do better

to perform better or reach a higher standard:
We did better than all the other schools.
You can do better than that!
5

the sooner the better/the bigger the better etc

used to emphasize that you would prefer something to happen as soon as possible, want something to be as big as possible etc:
School finishes at the end of the week, and the sooner the better as far as I'm concerned.
The younger you start learning a language, the better you'll speak it.
6

go one better (than somebody)

informal to do something more successfully than someone else:
The following year Lewis went one better by winning the gold medal.
Of course, they had to go one better and have the whole garden redesigned.

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