Most Descriptive Adjectives and some Adjectives of Quantity have degrees of comparison.
There are three degrees of comparison: The Positive, the Comparative, and the Superlative.
Degrees of Comparison
The Positive degree is the simplest form of the adjective. It is used when no comparison is meant; for example – Bina is a tall girl. This mango is sweet.
The Comparative degree is used when a comparison is intended between two persons or things in respect of some quality, for example – Bina is taller than Rita. The mangoes of Malda are sweeter than the mangoes (those) of Murshidabad.
The Superlative degree is used when a comparison is intended between more than two things or persons (or between two sets of things or persons); for example – Ram is the laziest boy in the class. She is the tallest of the three girls. This is the sweetest of all mangoes.
Note on Degrees of Comparison: The superlative with most is sometimes used when there is no idea of comparison but merely an intention to show the possession of quality in a very high degree; for example -This is a most useful book. He was most polite to me. Your news is most interesting. This is most unfortunate.
Formation of Comparative and Superlative
The one-syllable adjective forms its comparative by adding -er and its superlative by adding -est to the positive form.
Adjectives of three or more syllables form their comparative by putting more and their superlative by putting most before the positive.
|interesting||more interesting||most interesting|
|diligent||more diligent||most diligent|
|difficult||more difficult||most difficult|
Adjectives of two syllables follow one or another of the above rules. Those ending in full or re usually take more and most.
|doubtful||more doubtful||most doubtful|
|careful||more careful||most careful|
|obscure||more obscure||most obscure|
Adjectives ending in er, y or ly add -er/-est.
Irregular Degrees of Comparison
Some adjectives form their comparative and superlative irregularly.
Difference between Elder and Eldest
The elder and eldest are used only for persons, not for animals or things, and are now confined to members of the same family. The elder cannot be placed before then. Older and oldest are used by both persons and things.
Examples: Bina is my elder sister. Pompi is my eldest daughter. He is the elder of the two brothers. He is older than his sister. The farmer is the oldest man in the village. This is the oldest temple in our village.
Difference Between Farther and Further
Farther means “more distant”, and further means “additional”
Examples: Berhampore is farther from Kolkata than Krishnagar. After this, he did not seek further help. You must reply without further delay.
Later, latest, latter, last
Later and latest refer to time: latter and last indicate order.
Examples: He arrived later than we expected. I have not heard the latest news. The latter chapters of the book are interesting. He was the last to arrive here. Ours is the last house on the street.
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