Comparative and superlative of adjectives
What are comparative adjectives?
Take a look at these sentences:
- Martin is old. He’s older than his sister.
- Neptune is big. It’s bigger than Earth.
- Apple iPhones are expensive. They’re more expensive than most other phones.
Old, big, expensive are adjectives.
Older, bigger, more expensive are comparative forms.
What are superlative adjectives?
For examples of superlative forms, let’s look at these sentences:
- Jack is the oldest person in the village.
- Jupiter is the biggest planet in our solar system.
- The Beatles are probably the most popular band of all time.
The oldest, the biggest, the most popular are superlative forms.
Rules for forming comparatives and superlatives
|Comparative, superlative adjectives: rules|
|Short adjectives (one syllable)||old, long||older, longer||the oldest, the longest|
|Adjectives ending in one vowel + one consonant||big, hot||bigger, hotter||the biggest, the hottest|
|Two-syllable adjectives ending in -y||ugly, noisy, messy||uglier, noisier, messier||the ugliest, the noisiest, the messiest|
|Longer adjectives (with two or more syllables)||careful, expensive, beautiful||more careful, more expensive, more beautiful||the most careful, the most expensive, the most beautiful|
|With some two-syllable adjectives both -er and -est endings and more / most are possible.||polite, common||more polite / politer, more common / commoner||the most polite / the politest, the most common / the commonest|
|With some two-syllable adjectives only an -er or -est ending is possible.||narrow, simple, clever||narrower, simpler, cleverer||the narrowest, the simplest, the cleverest|
|far||further / farther||the furthest / the farthest|
Comparative adjectives and opposites
Here’s a list of some comparative adjectives and their opposites:
|Adjective ➝ comparative||Opposite adjective ➝ comparative|
|old ➝ older||young ➝ younger|
|cheap ➝ cheaper||expensive ➝ more expensive|
|slow ➝ slower||fast ➝ faster|
|hot ➝ hotter||cold ➝ colder|
|warm ➝ warmer||cool ➝ cooler|
|rich ➝ richer||poor ➝ poorer|
|large ➝ larger||small ➝ smaller|
|high ➝ higher||low ➝ lower|
|interesting ➝ more interesting||boring ➝ more boring|
|safe ➝ safer||dangerous ➝ more dangerous|
|comfortable ➝ more comfortable||uncomfortable ➝ more uncomfortable|
|strong ➝ stronger||weak ➝ weaker|
|wide ➝ wider||narrow ➝ narrower|
|clever ➝ cleverer||stupid ➝ more stupid|
|deep ➝ deeper||shallow ➝ shallower|
|good ➝ better||bad ➝ worse|
|near ➝ nearer||far ➝ further
|tidy ➝ tidier||untidy ➝ more untidy
|happy ➝ happier||unhappy ➝ more unhappy
Practise this grammar (elementary level): Comparatives and superlatives exercise (1) >>
Practise this grammar (intermediate): Comparatives and superlatives exercise >>