The words "tall" and "short" are adjectives. They describe Barry or
Eric. Since both of these words are only one syllable,
we simply add -er
or -est to
the end of the word to make comparatives.
One-syllable words that end in a double consonant (or two vowels and a
single consonant) simply take the -er
or -est at
the end. Here are some examples:
2. Adding -er or -est to a one-syllable adjective that ends in a single
vowel and a single consonant
Harold's clothes could not possibly be wetter!
the adjective you want to make into a comparative or superlative is
only one syllable long and ends in a single vowel and a single
consonant, you must double the final consonant, then add -er or -est.
Here are some common examples:
3. Adding -er or -est to an adjective that ends in Y
That was the funniest
thing I have ever heard!
When the adjective ends in a y,
you must change the y
to an i,
then add -er or
-est to form
the comparative or the superlative.
4. Adding -er or -est to a one-syllable adjective that ends in
Wow, your cat is much larger
For adjectives that end in e,
you must only add -r to
make a comparative and -st
to make a superlative.
Here are some common examples of these adjectives:
5. Making comparatives or superlatives with adjectives that have two or
Karen is the most
honest person I know!
One-syllable adjectives in English follow the rules above to add -er or -est.
Adjectives with three or more syllables add the word "more" before them
to become comparatives, and "most" to become superlatives.
Most two-syllable adjectives will take "more" or "most," but if they
end in -y, -er, -le, or -ow, they follow the
Here are some examples:
6. Irregular comparatives and superlatives
Otis sleeps better
with a pillow.
Finally, there are some very common adjectives that have irregular
forms for their comparatives and superlatives.
Here are the most important ones for you to remember:
So, let's review what we have learned about forming comparatives and
superlatives in English:
For one-syllable adjective, add -er (comparative) or -est (superlative) to
the end of the adjective.
If the one-syllable adjective ends in a single vowel and a
single consonant, double the final consonant before adding -er or -est.
For adjectives that end in -y, change the y to i, then add -er or -est.
If the one-syllable consonant ends in -e, simply add -r or -st.
For adjectives with two or more syllables, add "more"
adjective to form a comparative, or "most" to form a superlative
(unless the two-syllable adjective ends in -y, -le, -er, or -ow).
Remember that there are some common irregular comparative
and superlative adjectives.