had better


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had better

should or must I thought I had better destroy the list so that no one else would see it. You'd better get moving if you want to catch your train.
Usage notes: had is sometimes not said: If we have a problem you better hope somebody is there to help you.
See also: better

had better

Also, had best. Ought to, should. For example, You had better finish this one before starting another, or We had best be going. [Mid-1400s] Also see you'd better believe it.
See also: better

had better

/best Usage Problem
To be wise or obliged to; should or must: He had better do what he is told. You had best bring a raincoat in this weather.
See also: better
References in classic literature ?
I should say," said Ginger, curling her nostril, "that these men, who are so wise, had better give orders that in the future all foals should be born with their eyes set just in the middle of their foreheads, instead of on the side; they always think they can improve upon nature and mend what God has made.
Poyser's opinion, that when a man has said what he means, he had better stop.
We can't meddle safely in such matters, and had better not get `romantic rubbish' as you call it, into our heads, lest it spoil our friendship.
Nay, then, reverend father, I think you had better comply with his demands for Allan-a-Dale is the very man to abide by his word when he has so pledged it.
When Isaac returns successful through your mediation,'' said the Outlaw, ``I swear by Saint Hubert, I will see that he pays thee the money in good silver, or I will reckon with him for it in such sort, he had better have paid twenty such sums.
In addition, students who got jobs through school help had better career trajectories--9 years after graduating, they had 17% higher earnings than students who got jobs through direct applications (Rosenbaum).