prefer


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

prefer charges

To make a formal complaint of wrongdoing or mistreatment against another person. A: "Is it true that Greg preferred charges against you?" B: "Yes, but his claim is completely false! I've never done anything to him!" I really hope our neighbors don't prefer charges against us—I never would have cut down that tree if I had known it was on their property!
See also: charge, prefer

had (just) as soon do something

 and would (just) as soon do something
prefer to do something else; to be content to do something. (The would or had is usually expressed as the contraction 'd.) They want me to go into town. I'd as soon stay home. If you're cooking stew tonight, we'd as soon eat somewhere else. I would just as soon stay home as pay to go to see a bad movie.
See also: soon

prefer someone or something to someone (or something else)

to rank the desirability of someone or something over someone or something else. For the post of treasurer, I prefer Don to Jill. I prefer missing a meal to Jill's cooking.
See also: prefer

prefer something against someone

to file legal charges against someone [with the police]; to file a complaint or a charge against someone. The neighbors preferred charges against the driver of the car who ruined their lawns. I will not prefer charges against the driver, since it was partly my fault.
See also: prefer
References in classic literature ?
And should you see one whom you could prefer, I would not be so unjust" --
Lady Dorothea is lovely and Engaging; I prefer no woman to her; but know Sir, that I scorn to marry her in compliance with your Wishes.
For about the fifth time he then proposed the Heir at Law, doubting only whether to prefer Lord Duberley or Dr.
I prefer my own native land to France," replied the duke; "but if your majesty were to ask me which of the two cities, London or Paris, I should prefer as a residence, I should be forced to answer, Paris.
As to Captain Wentworth's views, she deemed it of more consequence that he should know his own mind early enough not to be endangering the happiness of either sister, or impeaching his own honour, than that he should prefer Henrietta to Louisa, or Louisa to Henrietta.
I prefer the talk of the French homunculus; it is at least more amusing.
Were there another place in England open to me I would prefer it.
Morland was a very good woman, and wished to see her children everything they ought to be; but her time was so much occupied in lying-in and teaching the little ones, that her elder daughters were inevitably left to shift for themselves; and it was not very wonderful that Catherine, who had by nature nothing heroic about her, should prefer cricket, baseball, riding on horseback, and running about the country at the age of fourteen, to books -- or at least books of information -- for, provided that nothing like useful knowledge could be gained from them, provided they were all story and no reflection, she had never any objection to books at all.