English Grammar

Comparison of adjectives in English Grammar with Illustration

Comparison of adjectives in English

All adjectives are divided into two groups: qualitative ( qualitative ) and relative ( relative ). But not all of them can be compared. For example, “wooden” is a relative adjective, and we cannot say “more wooden”. And qualitative adjectives can be presented in positive (beautiful), comparative (more beautiful), and excellent (most beautiful) degrees of comparison. And now we will tell you about each degree in detail. Comparison of adjectives in English Grammar

There are three degrees of comparison of adjectives in English –

  1. positive, 
  2. comparative, 
  3. excellent.
  • soft – soft (positive)
  • softer – softer (comparative)
  • softest – the softest (excellent)

Only qualitative adjectives that denote any qualities of an object and whose meaning can be expressed to a greater or lesser degree can change in the degree of comparison.

1-Formation of the comparative degree of adjectives in English

Let’s consider the formation of the comparative degree of adjectives on an example. Let’s take two roads. One of them is two-lane, the other is four-lane. Consequently, the second road is wider than the first. You can compare items using the word than (than, rather than):

  • This road is broader than that one. – This road is widerthan that.
  • Do you think that Maddie is more beautiful than Jane? – Do you think Maddy more beautifulthan Jane?
  • My mother is taller than her sister. – My mom mentionedthan her sister.

 

  • When forming the comparative degree of adjectives in English, it is necessary to take into account the length of the adjective. This length must be measured in syllables.
  • An adjective one syllable long – big (large), small (small), thin (thin), cute (funny), cold (cold) – is called monosyllabic.
  • The adjective is two syllable long – mod-ern (modern), bus-y (busy), clev-er (smart), pret-ty (handsome) – two-syllable.
  • An adjective with a length of three or more syllables – beau-ti-ful (beautiful), con-fi-den-tial (secret), de-fen-sive (defensive) – polysyllabic.

1- Formation of the comparative degree of adjectives in English

 

1-If the adjective is monosyllabic, the comparative degree is formed by adding the suffix – (e) r to the adjective. Comparison of adjectives in English Grammar

cold – cold er (colder)
warm (warm) – warm er (warmer)
cool (cool) – cool er (cooler)
safe (saf er )
cute (funny) – cut er (funnier)
wide (wide) – wid er (wider)

In Canada, I got used to colder winters. – In Canada, I’m used to colder winters.
Kate’s dog is cuter than Ann’s. – Kate the dog is cuter than Ann’s dog.

2-If the adjective ends in a vowel + consonant combination, then the final consonant is doubled.

big (large) – big g er (more)
thin (thin, thin) – thin n er (thinner, thinner)
fat (thick, bold) – fat t er (thicker, fatter)

The cuts were thinner but deeper.
I need a fatter piece of meat than that.
My bedroom is bigger than the living room.
July this year is hotter, I think.

3-For two-syllable adjectives that end in the sounds / r /, / l / or an unstressed vowel, add the suffix – (e) r.

 

clever / ˈklevər / (smart) – clever er (smarter)
noble / ˈnəʊbl / (noble) – nobl er (most noble)
narrow / ˈnærəʊ / (narrow) – narrow er (narrower)

 

4-If the adjective ends in -y, it changes to -i.

bus y (busy) – bus ier (more busy)
cos y (cozy) – cos ier (more comfortable)

5-Adjectives ending in -ing, -ed, -ful, and -less are comparative with more.

thank ful (thankful) – more thankful (more thankful)
amus ing (funny) – more amusing (more funny)

My previous job was more stressful than this one. – My previous job was more stressful than this one.

6-Some disyllabic adjectives have two forms of comparative formation: with the ending – (e) r and with the help of the word more. Comparison of adjectives in English Grammar

polite (polite) – polit er / more polite (more polite)

7-If the adjective is polysyllabic, then we form a comparative degree from it, putting the word more in front of it:

modern (modern) – more modern
famous (famous) – more famous
interesting (interesting) – more interesting
beautiful (beautiful) – more beautiful
unexpected (unexpected) – more unexpected

2-Formation of the superlative degree of adjectives in English

 

1-If the adjective is monosyllabic, its superlative is formed by adding the suffix – (e) st, and the definite article the the before the adjective. If there are other qualifiers, such as the possessive pronoun, the article the is omitted.

cold (cold) – the cold est (the coldest)
warm (warm) – the warm est (warmest)
cool (cool) – the cool est (the coolest)
safe (secure) – the the saf est (most secure)
a cute ( funny) – the cut est (funniest)
wide (wide) – the wid est (widest)

2-If the adjective ends in a vowel + consonant, the final consonant is doubled:

big – the big g est (largest)
thin (thin, thin) – the thin n est (thinnest, thinnest)
fat (thick, fat) – the fat t est (thickest, fattest)

3-For two-syllable adjectives that end in the sounds / r /, / l / or an unstressed vowel, add the suffix – (e) st. Do not forget that the definite article the must be placed before the adjective.

clever (smart) – the clever est (smartest)
noble (noble) – the nobl est (nobler)
narrow (narrow) – the narrow est (narrowest)

4-If the adjective ends in -y, it changes to -i.

friendl y (friendly) – the friendl iest (very friendly)
Trend y (fashion) – the Trend iest (very fashionable)

5-Adjectives ending in -ing, -ed, -ful, and -less are superlative with the most.

thank ful (thankful) – the most thankful
amus ing (funny) – the most amusing

6-Some disyllabic adjectives have two forms of comparative degree: the before the adjective with the ending – (e) st or the most before the adjective.

polite (polite) – the polit est / the most polite (the most polite)

7-Polysyllabic adjectives are superlative with the most before the adjective.

modern  – the most modern
famous – the most famous
interesting  – the most interesting
beautiful  – the most beautiful
unexpected  – the most unexpected

Exception adjectives

 

There are also adjectives, the degree of comparison of which is not formed according to the general rule. These adjectives, like their forms, should be known by heart.

  • Good – better – the best.
  • Bad – worse – the worst.
  • Little – less – the least.
  • Many/much – more – the most.
  • Old – older – the oldest.
  • Old – elder – the eldest – about family members.
  • Late – later – the latest / last .
  • Late – the latter – the last (late – the second of the two listed – the last in order).
  • Near – nearer – the nearest.
  • Near – nearer – next / the next .
  • Far – farther – the farthest.
  • Of Far – Further – the the furthest (the far, far – further – further / additional)

Comparison of adjectives in English Grammar

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