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Comparative Forms in English

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Comparative Forms in English

We use the comparative and superlative form to compare and contrast different objects in English. Use the comparative form to show the difference between two objects. Example: New York is more exciting than Seattle. Use the superlative form when speaking about three or more objects to show which object is 'the most' of something. Example: New York is the most exciting city in the USA.

Here is a chart showing how to construct the comparative form in English. Notice in the example sentences that we use 'than' to compare the two objects:

One Syllable Adjectives

add '-er' to end of the adjective (Note: double the final consonant if preceded by a vowel) remove the 'y' from the adjective and add 'ier'

Example: cheap - cheaper / hot - hotter / high - higher

Example Sentences

Yesterday was hotter than today.
This book is cheaper than that book.

Two Syllable Adjectives Ending in '-y'

Example: happy - happier / funny - funnier

Example Sentences

I am happier than you.
That joke was funnier than his joke.

Two, Three or More Syllable Adjectives

place 'more' before the adjective

Example: interesting - more interesting / difficult - more difficult

Example Sentences

London is more expensive than Madrid.
This test is more difficult than the last test.

IMPORTANT EXCEPTIONS

There are some important exceptions to these rules. Here are two of the most important exceptions:

good

  • good - adjective
  • better - comparative

Example Sentences

This book is better than that one.
I am better at tennis than my sister.

bad

  • bad - adjective
  • worse - comparative

Example Sentences

His French is worse than mine.
His singing is worse than Tom's.

Test your understanding with this short quiz.

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