Better and better, more and more: repeating comparative adjectives to show change
Let’s take a look at the way English repeats comparative adjectives to describe a continuous change.
Change can happen to different degrees:
- just once, moderately – The temperature fell yesterday.
- dramatically – Sales of iPhones rocketed last year.
- a lot / a little – My English improved quite a lot during the course.
In the three examples above we have used verbs (fell, rocketed, improved) to show the change. However, when we want to express continuous (and often big) change, we can use two comparatives adjectives separated by and.
Take a look at these examples:
- My uncle grew fatter and fatter over the years.
- As Microsoft grew, Bill Gates got richer and richer.
- The balloon got bigger and bigger and then burst.
In each example above we used a comparative adjective (fatter, richer, bigger), followed by and, and then repeated the comparative.
‘More and more’ for longer comparatives
We don’t repeat comparative adjectives that are used with more; we simple say more and more:
- Things are getting more and more expensive.
- This books gets more and more interesting with every chapter.
- He spoke for over an hour and his explanation got more and more complicated.
Here’s a short quiz for you to test yourself. And don’t forget – keep visiting Speakspeak.com and your English will get better and better!
Change the adjective in brackets into a comparative and use and to express continuing change: