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Irregular Comparatives

How to use the irregular comparatives in Spanish?

Irregular comparatives in spanish

The following adjectives have irregular forms for the comparative and the superlative:

Adjective: bueno (good)
Comparative: 
mejor (better)
Superlative: 
el/la mejor (the best)

Adjective: malo (bad)
Comparative: 
peor (worse)
Superlative:
 el/la peor (the worst)

Adjective: grande (big)
Comparative: 
mayor (older; greater)
Superlative: 
el/la mayor (the oldest; the greatest)

Adjective: pequeño (small)
Comparative: 
menor (younger; less)
Superlative: 
el/la menor (the youngest; the least)

 

Note: The words "más" and "menos" are not used with the irregular comparatives.

e.g.

Correct:
Este queso es
bueno, pero ese queso  es mejor. – This cheese is good, but that cheese is better.
Este arroz es malo, pero ese arroz está peor- This rice is bad, but that rice is worse

 

Note: With the irregular superlatives, the demonstrative adjective is used.

Este queso es bueno.- This cheese is good.

Ese queso es mejor.- That cheese is better.

Aquel queso es el mejor. -That cheese over there is the best.

 

Note: When referring to size, "grande" and "pequeño" follow the normal rules for comparative and superlative forms. That is, they do not use the irregular forms "menor" and "mayor".

e.g.

Esta casa es grande.- This house is big.

Esa casa es más grande. -That house is bigger.

Aquella casa es la más grande. -That house over there is the biggest.

 

Note: When referring to age, use the irregular forms "mayor" and "menor".

e.g.

Yo soy  menor que tú. - I am younger than you.

Tú eres la mayor de las hermanas. - You are the eldest of the sisters



Note: When referring to the concepts “less” or “greater”, use the irregular forms "mayor" and "menor".

e.g.

La salud es de mayor importancia que el dinero. - Health is of greater importance than money.

El dinero es de menor importancia que la salud - Money is of less importance than health.


Note: The words "joven" and "viejo" are used for non-comparative descriptions of age.

e.g.

El chica es joven. -The girl is young.
El abuelo es viejo. -The grandfather is old.

 


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