Thursday, April 26, 2007

Comparative and Superlative Forms of Adjectives

Comparatives and superlatives are used to express degrees of comparison. We form adjective in comparative form to compare two similar things. Superlatives are used to show the greatest degree of a quality or quantity among three or more people or things.

Comparatives are formed by adding the suffix –er or the preceding word ‘more’. Superlatives are formed by adding the suffix –est or the preceding word ‘most’. The correct comparative and superlative forms of an adjective depend on the number of syllable of the adjective.

For adjective that has one syllable, we add the suffix –er to form comparative and suffix –est to form superlative. E.g. taller, tallest; bigger, biggest; larger, largest. For adjective that has more than one syllable, we add the preceding word ‘more’ to form comparative and ‘most’ to form superlative. E.g. more precise, most precise; more peaceful, most peaceful; more beautiful, most beautiful.

Please take note that two-syllable adjectives ending with –y, -er, -le or –ow will use the suffix –er or suffix –est form to form comparative or superlative. E.g. prettier, prettiest; gentler, gentlest; narrower, narrowest. Adding ‘more’ or ‘most’ to two-syllable adjectives to form comparative or superlative, however, is getting common and gaining ground in modern English. E.g. more pretty, most pretty; more gentle, most gentle; more narrow, most narrow.

There are certain adjectives that have irregular forms of comparatives and superlatives. In other words, these adjectives do not follow the rules mentioned in the previous two paragraphs. E.g. good, better, best; bad, worse, worst; far, farther, farthest; little, less, least; many, more, most.

When using comparative adjective in a sentence, we add the word ‘than’ immediately after the adjective. E.g. Sabrina is smarter than Shakira. When using superlative adjective in a sentence, we add the word ‘the’ before the adjective. E.g. Sally is the smartest student at our school.

3 comments:

JB said...

I'd like to reproduce some of this info in our newsletter... good stuff! Let me know if that is OK.

Angel said...

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skrm said...

I hope have some example of comparative essay , I need it as an example for my EST test.