Degrees of Adjectives

Degrees of Adjectives

A Lesson by chad

this took alot of time so hope u like it


Adjectives can express degrees of modification:

  • Gladys is a rich woman, but Josie is richer than Gladys, and Sadie is the richest woman in town. 


    The degrees of comparison are known as the positive, the comparative, and the superlative. (Actually, only the comparative and superlative show degrees.) We use the comparative for comparing two things and the superlative for comparing three or more things. Notice that the word than frequently accompanies the comparative and the word the precedes the superlative. The inflected suffixes -er and -est suffice to form most comparatives and superlatives, although we need -ier and -iest when a two-syllable adjective ends in y (happier and happiest); otherwise we use more and most when an adjective has more than one syllable.



    Positive Comparative Superlative
    rich richer richest
    lovely lovelier loveliest
    beautiful more beautiful most beautiful




    Certain adjectives have irregular forms in the comparative and superlative degrees:

    Irregular Comparative and Superlative Forms
    good better best
    bad worse worst
    little less least
    more most
    far further furthest

    Be careful not to form comparatives or superlatives of adjectives which already express an extreme of comparison — unique, for instance — although it probably is possible to form comparative forms of most adjectives: something can be more perfect, and someone can have a fuller figure. People who argue that one woman cannot be more pregnant than another have never been nine-months pregnant with twins.



    According to Bryan Garner, "complete" is one of those adjectives that does not admit of comparative degrees. We could say, however, "more nearly complete." I am sure that I have not been consistent in my application of this principle in the Guide (I can hear myself, now, saying something like "less adequate" or "more preferable" or "less fatal"). Other adjectives that Garner would include in this list are as follows:

             absolute          impossible          principal
             adequate          inevitable          stationary
             chief          irrevocable          sufficient
             complete          main          unanimous
             devoid          manifest          unavoidable
             entire          minor          unbroken
             fatal          paramount          unique
             final          perpetual          universal
             ideal          preferable          whole


    Be careful, also, not to use more along with a comparative adjective formed with -er nor to use most along with a superlative adjective formed with -est (e.g., do not write that something is more heavier or most heaviest).

    The as — as construction is used to create a comparison expressing equality:

    • He is as foolish as he is large.
    • She is as bright as her mother




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    Posted 7 Years Ago

    While I was going on my tutorial blitz yesterday, I found "your" adjective course and subscribed so I could come back to it. Though, now that I have come back to it, I realize that if I had just clicked the links, I could go to the original site where you got this information from. Just a tip, plagiarizing is not cool.
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    Added on February 13, 2011
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    Well im Chad and i came to start righting and to have more hobbies. I also have a corighter. So i think he should get a thank you well. Im 13 and i have a girl friand. I try to right about her all the..