Grammar – Degree of Comparison

Degree of Comparison

In English, degree of comparison is used when we compare one person or one thing with another. There are three degrees of comparison:
1. Positive degree
2. Comparative Degree
3. Superlative Degree
1. Positive degree:
Positive degree is the simplest form of the adjective. It is used when we talk about only one person or one thing. For example:
(a) This house is big.
(b) You are intelligent.
(c) This book is small.
2. Comparative Degree:
Comparative Degree is used when we compare two persons or two things. For example:
(a) This house is bigger than that.
(b) You are more intelligent than Ramesh.
(c) Moon is smaller than earth.
3. Superlative Degree:Superlative Degree is used when more than two persons or things are compared. For example:
(a) This is the biggest house in my colony.
(b) You are the tallest boy in the class.
(c) This book is the smallest of all.
Things to remember:
1. Adjectives that express shape or material or time or the highest or lowest degree of quality, cannot be compared. For example : round, square, earthen, golden, daily, annual, perfect, extreme, eternal, chief, complete, supreme, unique, universal, dead, empty, ,etc.
2. The comparatives – inferior, prior, superior, senior, junior are followed by “to” not by “than”.For example:
·         Rahil is senior to you.
·         She is superior to you.
·         He is junior to me.
3. The comparatives – elder, former, upper, outer, utter, latter, inner, etc. are neither followed by “than” nor by “to”. They are followed by “of” when selection is implied. For example:
·         Surjeet is a member of the upper ofthe two chambers.
·         Aashutosh is a former member of this school.
·         She got the upper hand.
4. Superlatives are generally preceded by “the” and followed by “of”, except when they arew qualified by possessive pronouns or when they qualify the vocative case. For example:
·         Kiran is the cleverest of all the sisters.
·         Rakhi is my closest firend.
·         Dearest friend, please help me.
5. Don’t use the comparative degree after the word “Comparatively”, which in itself expresses the idea of comparison. For example:
·         I am comparatively well (not better).
·         She is comparatively rich.
6. Adjectives of different degrees cannot be joined by “and”. For example:
Rajan is very tall and strongestboy in the class. (Incorrect)
Rajan is the tallest and strongest boy in the class. (Incorrect)
7. Double comparatives and superlatives should not be used. For example:
·         She is more happier than me. (Incorrect)

·         She is happier than me. (correct)

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