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Comparative and superlative.

• Comparison of adjectives and nouns

When we use adjectives in sentences in their standard form, such as happy, big, high, clean,
serious, we call this form the positive form of the adjective. When we want to compare things or
people, we can use another form of the adjective, which we refer to as the comparative form, or
we can add the word more.
More is also use with nouns to make comparisons. When making comparisons with nouns, we
also use the word than:
There are more people in Barcelona than there are in Alicante.
More people live in Barcelona than in Alicante.
When the meaning is clear, the noun may be omitted and more used by itself:
Do you have enough time to finish the report, or do you need more?
I don’t have enough money to buy the car I want. I have to save more.
In these two examples, the nouns time and money have been omitted.

Some basic rules for forming adjective comparatives:


o For most one syllable adjectives, -er is added to the adjective:
→ high/higher, slow/slower, wet/wetter, etc.
o For most two syllable adjectives, more is used:
→ more serious, more active, more dangerous, more confusing, etc.
o –er is used with two syllable adjectives that end in –y. The –y is changed to –I
→ happy/happier, busy/busier, pretty/prettier, friendly/friendlier
o Some two syllable adjectives us either –er or more:
→ able, angry, clever, common, cruel, friendly, gentle, handsome, narrow, pleasant,
polite, quiet, simple, sour.
o More is used with long adjectives:
→ important, fascinating, outstanding, interesting, marvellous…
o Good and bad have irregular comparative forms:
→ good/better, bad/worse

Superlative:

We use the superlatives in the following way:

20€ 15€ 10€


Stage

Seats Seats Seats

Front Middle Back

The most expensive seats are at the front of the theatre.


The cheapest seats are at the back.
The least expensive seats are at the back.
He is the worst player in the team.
It was the happiest day of their lives.

We can use the superlative without a noun:


The seats at the back are the cheapest.
We always use the before the superlative, and we use in (not of) for places after the superlative.
We do not always use a noun after a superlative adjective.
We often use present perfect with ever after the superlative.

That was the best film I’ve ever seen.

Some basic rules for forming adjective superlatives:


o For most one syllable adjectives, The + adjective + -est is added to the adjective:
→ high/ the highest, slow/ the slowest, wet / the wettest, etc.
o For most two syllable adjectives, the most is used:
→ the most serious, the most active, the most dangerous, the most confusing, etc.
o –est is used with two syllable adjectives that end in –y. The –y is changed to –I
→ happy/the happiest, busy/ the busiest, pretty/the prettiest, friendly/the friendliest
o Some two syllable adjectives use either –est or the most:
→ able, angry, clever, common, cruel, friendly, gentle, handsome, narrow, pleasant,
polite, quiet, simple, sour.
o The most is used with long adjectives:
→ important, fascinating, outstanding, interesting, marvellous…
o Good and bad have irregular superlative forms:
→ good/the best, bad/ the worst