We use comparative adjectives when we are comparing two different things. This lesson covers six rules to help you use the correct comparative adjectives.
Examples of comparative adjectives:
- Dogs are smaller than horses.
- Learning grammar is more difficult than vocabulary.
- I have to get up earlier than my classmates because I live far from school.
Syllables and comparative adjectives
To understand the rules for using comparative adjectives, you will need to know the meaning of a syllable.
A syllable is a single sound. For example, ‘goodbye’ has two syllables – ‘good’ and ‘bye’.
Here are some more examples:
|1 syllable words:||hot, cold, dry|
|2 syllable words:||happy, tired|
|3 syllable words:||excited, exhausted|
When making comparative adjectives, there are 6 rules you need to remember:
Comparative adjectives rule 1 of 6:
With adjectives with one syllable, simply add +er than
tall > taller than
fast > faster than
high > higher than
Comparative adjectives rule 2 of 6:
If the adjective ends in +y, remove the -y and add +ier than
happy > happier than
angry > angrier than
busy > busier than
Comparative adjectives rule 3 of 6:
Adjectives that already end in +e only have +r than added.
nice > nicer than
safe > safer than
late > later than
Comparative adjectives rule 4 of 6:
We add more…than to words with 3 syllables or more.
intelligent > more intelligent than
beautiful > more beautiful than
interesting > more interesting than
Comparative adjectives rule 5 of 6
Some 2 syllable adjectives have +er than and some have more…than. Some 2 syllable adjectives can also be used both ways. NOTE: 2 syllable adjectives that end in -y, -le, and -er often form the comparative by adding +er.
honest > more honest than
clever > more clever than OR cleverer than
modern > more modern than
Comparative adjectives rule 6 of 6:
Adjectives that end with a consonant, then a vowel, then a consonant need the consonant doubled.
big > bigger than (not biger than)
hot > hotter than (not hoter than)
fat > fatter than (not fater than)
Now test your skills with the comparative adjectives exercises!