Easy Learning French

Comparatives and superlatives of adverbs - Easy Learning Grammar French

1 Comparative adverbs

What is a comparative adverb?
A comparative adverb is one which, in English, has -er on the end of it or more or less in front of it, for example, earlier, later, sooner, more/less frequently.
  • Adverbs can be used to make comparisons in French, just as they can in English. The comparative (more often, faster) of adverbs is formed using the same phrases as for adjectives.
  • plus … (que)more … (than)
    Tu marches plus vite que moi.You walk faster than me.
    Elle chante plus fort que les autres.She’s singing louder than the others.
  • moins … (que)less … (than)
    Parle moins vite!Don’t speak so fast! (literally: Speak less fast!)
    Nous nous voyons moins souvent qu’avant.We see each other less often than before.
  • aussi … queas … as
    Je parle français aussi bien que toi!I can speak French as well as you!
    Viens aussi vite que possible.Come as quickly as possible.

2 Superlative adverbs

What is a superlative adverb?
A superlative adverb is one which, in English, has -est on the end of it or most or least in front of it, for example, soonest, fastest, most/least frequently.
  • The superlative of adverbs (the most, the fastest) is formed using the same phrases as for adjectives, except that le NEVER changes to la or les in the feminine and plural with adverbs as it does with adjectives.
  • le plus … (que) the most … (that)
    Marianne parle le plus vite.Marianne speaks fastest.
  • le moins … (que) the least … (that)
    C’est Gordon qui a mangé le moins.Gordon ate the least.

3 Adverbs with irregular comparatives and superlatives

  • Some of the most common adverbs have irregular comparative and superlative forms.
AdverbMeaningComparativeMeaningSuperlativeMeaning
beaucoupa lotplusmorele plus(the) most
bienwellmieuxbetterle mieux(the) best
malbadlypis
plus mal
worsele pis
le plus mal
(the) worst
peulittlemoinslessle moins(the) least
C’est lui qui danse le mieux.He dances best.
Key points
  • Comparatives of adverbs are formed in the same way as comparatives of adjectives, using plus … (que), moins … (que) and aussi … que.
  • Superlatives of adverbs are formed in the same way as superlatives of adjectives, using le plus … (que) and le moins … (que).
    le never changes in the feminine and plural.
  • Unlike adjectives, adverbs do not change their form to agree with the verb, adjective or other adverb they relate to.

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