Identification of Comparative Forms of Adverbs


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In today’s class, we will be talking about the identification of comparative forms of adverbs. Enjoy the class!

Identification of comparative forms of adverbs


Comparative Adverbs

Comparative Adverbs

One of the jobs of an adverb is to modify a verb action, for example:

  • Joe ran fast.

If we want to compare one verb action with another, we can use a comparative adverb, for example:

  • Joe ran fast, but Mary came first because she ran faster.

We use comparative adverbs when talking about two actions (not three or more actions). Comparison is always between TWO things.

How do we make comparative adverbs?

There are three basic ways to make or “form” a comparative adverb:

  1. One-syllable adverbs: add -er

If an adverb has only one syllable, we usually just add -er to make it comparative: fast → faster. Here are some examples:

adverb comparative adverb
fast faster
hard harder
high higher
late later
low lower
wide wider

Note that most one-syllable adverbs have the same form as their equivalent adjectives. Don’t let this confuse you.

 For example:

positive comparative
adjective a fast car a faster car
adverb he drives fast he drives faster
  1. Two-syllable adverbs: use more

When an adverb has two or more syllables (like all -ly adverbs), we can make it comparative by adding more in front: quickly → more quickly.

Look at these examples:

adverb comparative adverb
carefully more carefully
efficiently more efficiently
horribly more horribly
often more often
quickly more quickly
recently more recently
slowly more slowly
strangely more strangely

We can also use less in place of more to suggest a reduction in the action.

Look at these examples:

sentence example
She visits often. once a week
Now she visits more often. ↑ once a day
Now she visits less often. ↓ once a month
  1. Irregular Adverbs:

A few adverbs have an irregular form, for example:

adverb comparative adverb
badly worse
early earlier
far further/farther
little less
much more
well better

Comparative adverbs with informal forms

Note that a few adverbs have a formal (“correct”) form with -ly and an informal form without -ly. The same is then true of their comparative forms.

Although you may hear some native speakers using the informal form in speech, it is best avoided in formal situations and examinations.

The most common examples are:

adverb comparative adverb
cheap/cheaply cheaper/more cheaply
loud/loudly louder/more loudly
quick/quickly quicker/more quickly
slow/slowly slower/more slowly

Note that a few adverbs have NO comparative form, for example:

  • Again
  • First
  • Daily
  • Yesterday
  • Here
  • There
  • Now
  • Then
  • Never
  • sometimes

Guided informal letter: a letter to your mother on a chosen topic

  • Write a letter to your mother telling her when the school will be closed for the holidays.

Using questions tags – conversation involving negative to generate questions using tags

Negative question tag:

If the main sentence is positive, the question tag should be negative. The pattern followed by a negative question tag is:

auxiliary + n’t + subject

Examples of Negative question tag:
  1. You are free, aren’t you?
  2. George broke the glass, didn’t he?


In our next class, we will be talking about the Use of Comparative Forms of Adverbs in Sentences.  We hope you enjoyed the class.

Should you have any further question, feel free to ask in the comment section below and trust us to respond as soon as possible.

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