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ENGLISH ADJECTIVES: Comparative & Superlative

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EXAMPLES OF IRREGULAR FORMS


ADJECTIVES
COMPARATIVE
SUPERLATIVE
MUCH/MANY
MORE
THE MOST
FEW/LITTLE
LESS
THE LEAST
GOOD
BETTER
THE BEST
BAD
WORSE
THE WORST
ADJECTIVES
Regular forms requiring 'ER' or 'EST'
COMPARATIVE
IMPORTANT
FORMS
GRAMMATICAL ADJECTIVES
POINTS
(........ER)
Adjectives with
THIN
THINNER
one syllable only
Adjectives ending
in a single
FAT
FATTER
consonant which
must be doubled
Adjectives with
FIERCE
FIERCER
one syllable, but
ending in E
Adjectives with
FRIENDLY
FRIENDLIER
one syllable + Y
(Y changes to I)
ADJECTIVES

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Adjectives with more than one syllable

Adjectives ending with ED or ING

ADJECTIVES

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Darkness

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COMPARATIVE
FORMS
(MORE/LESS ........)

DANGEROUS

MORE/LESS
DANGEROUS

BORED

Classical Literature

(THE .....EST)

(even though only one syllable is


pronounced)

MORE/LESS BORED

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THE THINNEST

THE FATTEST

UNDER
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THE FIERCEST
THE
FRIENDLIEST

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SUPERLATIVE
FORMS

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contains mostly
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all British-English
spellings
Sport

SUPERLATIVE
FORMS
(THE
MOST/THE
LEAST .......)
THE
MOST/THE
LEAST
DANGEROUS
THE
MOST/THE
LEAST BORED

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ENGLISH ADJECTIVES: Comparative & Superlative

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INTERESTING

MORE/LESS
INTERESTING

THE
MOST/THE
LEAST
INTERESTING

STANDARD CONSTRUCTION EXAMPLES


1. The black dog is fat

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2. The fat dog is in the road.


3. The black dog is fatter than the white dog
4. The white dog is not as fat as the black dog
5. The black dog is friendlier than the white dog, but the brown dog is the
fiercest.

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6. The white dog is the thinnest and it is less dangerous than the brown dog.
7.a) Those books are very interesting and this one is the least interesting of them
all.

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7.b) Those books are not very interesting and this one is the most boring of them
all.
IMPORTANT NOTES

Video

Many similar lists do not contain THE; however, I recommend that


you learn it as part of the list, because it is necessary almost every time
you use the superlative (See construction examples: 5, 6, 7a, 7b)

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Adjectives usually precede the noun (See construction example 2), or


follow the verb TO BE (See construction example 1); however, there
are exceptions, especially in poetry and lyrics. In The Beatles' Song:
'And I Love Her', the following two examples can be found: Bright are the stars that shine (normally: The bright stars are
shining or The stars are shining brightly)

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Dark is the sky (The sky is dark)

Stating the comparative opposite:


Adjectives with one syllable: use an adjective with the opposite
meaning + ER (See construction example 6)

Adjectives with more than one syllable: use MORE/LESS to


indicate the opposite + the same adjective or an adjective with
the opposite meaning.

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for different
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listener
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Additional
instructions

Stating the superlative opposite:


Adjectives with one syllable: use an adjective with the opposite
meaning + EST (See construction example 6)

Adjectives with more than one syllable: use THE MOST/THE


LEAST to indicate the opposite. (See construction examples 7a
and 7b)
PRACTICE

INSTRUCTIONS: Use the above rules and examples to complete the


following exercise. Guess the adjectives if you can.
MAKE THIS EXERCISE EASIER: Use the table of missing adjectives
below

Poetry

ESL practice

SOLDIER: Hi, mate! Can't wait to get home. I haven't been home for six
months.

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ENGLISH ADJECTIVES: Comparative & Superlative

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SAILOR:
that.

Well, I have been away from home much ....................... than

SOLDIER: Where do you live? I live in Scotland.


SAILOR:

Well, I live in Kent; it is a bit ....................... than Scotland.

SOLDIER:

Have you got a girlfriend or wife?

nursery
rhymes

bedtime
story

alphabet
practice

SAILOR:
Yes, I have a girlfriend who wants to marry me, but
she's ....................... than me.
SOLDIER:

Is she a lot ....................... than you?

SAILOR:

Oh, yes. 10 centimetres.

SOLDIER: Well my girlfriend is much ....................... than that. In fact


she is ....................... woman I know.
SAILOR: My girlfriend's very ......................., too. Have you got a photo
of your one?
SOLDIER:
Yes, here it is. My girlfriend is ....................... girl in the
world, but she is so ........................
SAILOR:
She reminds me of my girlfriend, but this woman
has ....................... hair. Let me look ....................... with my glasses.
Hmmmm! This woman is definitely as ....................... as my girlfriend!
Just a minute! She is MY girlfriend, not YOUR girlfriend!
You're ....................... scumbag I have ever met. Get a girlfriend of your
own!
SOLDIER: Are you sure she's your girlfriend? Is her hair
as ....................... as your girlfriend's?
SAILOR: Well, no, but she must have dyed it. It's usually
much ....................... than that. I have always preferred blondes.
SOLDIER: Well, there you are, then. She can't be your girlfriend - her
hair's the wrong colour.
SAILOR: Maybe you're right, but she does look just like my Meg. Sorry,
mate. Didn't mean to turn on you like that. I'm not usually as .......................
as that. Look, here's a photo of Meg.
SOLDIER: Yes, she does resemble my Margaret a bit, but her hair is
much ....................... and she also looks ....................... in the face. (Thinks:
You must be ....................... than you look!)
SAILOR: Yes. You're right. Well then, bye mate. ....................... to have
met you.
SOLDIER: Bye, mate. (Thinks: You must be ....................... man I have
ever met!)
Now check your answers
THE MISSING ADJECTIVES

ADJECTIVE

(Some words are repeated)


COMPARATIVE
SUPERLATIVE

lighter

.......................

......................

.......................

.......................
nice

http://www.musicalenglishlessons.org/grammar-adjectives.htm

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ENGLISH ADJECTIVES: Comparative & Superlative

.......................

more stupid

.......................

lanky

.......................

the lankiest

curly

......................

.......................

dark

.......................

.......................

.......................

.......................

the meanest

.......................

blonder

.......................

......................

chubbier.

.......................

.......................

......................

the most gullible

dark

......................

.......................

.......................

longer

.......................

pretty

.......................

the prettiest

touchy

.......................

.......................

tall

taller

.......................

.......................

warmer

.......................

.......................

curlier

.......................

.......................

closer
Note:

.......................

lanky (a negative adjective) = tall

chubby (a kinder adjective) = fat or fattish


THE ANSWER KEY TO THE EXERCISE FOR PRACTISING
ADJECTIVES

INSTRUCTIONS: Use the above rules and examples to complete the


following exercise
SOLDIER: Hi, mate! Can't wait to get home. I haven't been home for six
months.
SAILOR:

Well, I have been away from home much longer than that.

SOLDIER: Where do you live? I live in Scotland.


SAILOR:

Well, I live in Kent; it is a bit warmer than Scotland.

SOLDIER:

Have you got a girlfriend or wife?

SAILOR:
Yes, I have a girlfriend who wants to marry me, but she's
taller than me.
SOLDIER:

Is she a lot taller than you?

SAILOR:

Oh, yes. 10 centimetres.

SOLDIER: Well my girlfriend is much taller than that. In fact she is the
lankiest woman I know.
SAILOR:
one?

My girlfriend's very tall, too. Have you got a photo of your

http://www.musicalenglishlessons.org/grammar-adjectives.htm

2011/1/3

ENGLISH ADJECTIVES: Comparative & Superlative

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SOLDIER:
Yes, here it is. My girlfriend is 2-the prettiest girl in the
world, but she is so lanky.
SAILOR:
She reminds me of my girlfriend, but this woman has curlier
hair. Let me look closer with my glasses. Hmmmm! This woman is
definitely as pretty as my girlfriend! Just a minute! She is MY girlfriend,
not YOUR girlfriend! You're the meanest scumbag I have ever met. Get a
girlfriend of your own!
SOLDIER: Are you sure she's your girlfriend? Is her hair as dark as your
girlfriend's?
SAILOR: Well, no, but she must have dyed it. It's usually much blonder
than that. I have always preferred blondes.
SOLDIER: Well, there you are, then. She can't be your girlfriend - her
hair's the wrong colour.
SAILOR: Maybe you're right, but she does look just like my Meg. Sorry,
mate. Didn't mean to turn on you like that. I'm not usually as touchy as
that. Look, here's a photo of Meg.
SOLDIER: Yes, she does resemble my Margaret a bit, but her hair is much
lighter and she also looks chubbier in the face. (Thinks: You must be more
stupid than you look!)
SAILOR: Yes. You're right. Well then, bye mate. Nice to have met you.
SOLDIER: Bye, mate. (Thinks: You must be the most gullible man I have
ever met!)
(Note: Meg is a nickname for someone named Margaret)
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ENGLISH ADJECTIVES: Comparative & Superlative

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