Superlative Definition and Examples.
“You are the best, you work the hardest, you have the brightest smile, and you are my most dedicated student.”
I am not trying to flatter you, I was giving you some examples of superlatives.
In this lesson, I’ll cover the definition of superlative and give a few examples. By the end of the lesson, you’ll have a really good understanding of the meaning of superlative.
The meaning of superlative in grammar
Superlative adjectives are used to describe the extreme of something. When using a superlative adjective, there is no other adjective you can use that describes a feature to a further amount.
You need to be discussing three or more things in order to use a superlative adjective and that is one thing that makes a superlative different from a comparison. E.g.
In this example, the meaning of a superlative is shown in that of the items, all are big, but none are bigger than the biggest.
The meaning of superlative as an adjective
Superlative can be used as an adjective in it’s own right. In this case, the meaning of superlative is generally comparable to ‘best’. For example: the restaurant creates the most superlative cakes in the local area.
There are a number of synonyms of superlative, when you use the word ‘superlative’ as an adjective in its own right. These include: best, amazing, brilliant, excellent, magnificent, outstanding, unparalleled, exceptional.
There are a number of antonyms of superlative, when you use the word ‘superlative’ as an adjective. Including: poor, sub-par, unexceptional, disappointing, below expectations.
How to use the superlative suffix
There are a number of standard rules to use the superlative suffix. As usual in English, these are not all always true, but a good basis for using superlative adjectives correctly:
- Using superlatives with one-syllable: Add -est to the end. For example: hot → hottest.
- Using superlatives with one-syllable ending in e: Add -st to the end. For example: sure → surest.
- Using superlatives ending in -y: replace the -y with an -i + -est. E.g. Silly → silliest.
- Using superlatives with one-syllable ending with consonant-vowel-consonant: Double the end consonant before adding -est. E.g. hot becomes hottest.
- Using two-syllable superlatives ending with y: Replace the y with an i + -est. E.g., silly → silliest.
- Using superlatives with two-syllables, ending with -er, -le, or -ow: Just add -est at the end of the word.
In any other superlative adjectives that are longer than a single syllable, simply add either ‘most’ or ‘least’ to the positive form of the word. In these examples, you would not use a superlative suffix. For example:
– It is the most cosmopolitan city in America
– She is the least charismatic of anyone on the board.
The ‘What is a superlative adjective?’ video
We’ve already covered the meaning and usage of superlative adjectives. Not watch the video below that will help you understand ‘What is a superlative adjective?’ with lots of examples. Here we go:
Comparative and superlative exercises pdf
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A List of Superlatives with Superlative Examples
Below is a list of superlatives which include examples of the most commonly searched for superlative forms. This like of superlatives is a good one to understand. You should work through these superlative examples and memorise them.
The superlative of good
The superlative of good is best. For example: Jay has always been good at running, but this year he will win, he is the best.
The superlative of bad
The superlative of bad is worst. For example: Jay has never been good at running, but this year he is terrible, his came in last place, he is the worst!
The superlative of far
The superlative of far is furthest. E.g. Although he didn’t finish the race, nobody did. He won because he ran the furthest before giving up.
The superlative of beautiful
The superlative of beautiful is the most beautiful. E.g. Cinderella was the most beautiful girl at the ball.
The superlative of fun
The superlative of fun is most fun. E.g. Even though Cinderella wasn’t the most beautiful girl at the ball, she was the most fun!
The superlative of big
The superlative of big is biggest. E.g. The biggest fish in the sea is the whale shark.
The superlative of little
The superlative of little is littlest. E.g. The littlest seahorse is the pigmy seahorse.
The superlative of small
The superlative of small is smallest. E.g. The smallest seahorse is the pigmy seahorse.
The superlative of easy
The superlative of easy is easiest. E.g. That last exam was the easiest of them all.
The superlative of large
The superlative of largest. E.g. The largest of the wales is the blue whale.
The superlative of well
The superlative of well is most well. E.g. All of the patients are sick, but patient #6 is the most well.
The superlative of cold
The superlative of cold is coldest. E.g. That freezer goes to the coldest temperature. You’re ice cream will break your teeth.
The superlative of wise
The superlative of wise is most wise. E.g. Of all the owls in the forest, that one is the most wise.
The superlative of dry
The superlative of driest. E.g. The Atacama desert is the driest place in the world.
The superlative of brave
The superlative of brave is bravest. E.g. The soldiers in the S.A.S. are the bravest in the world.
The superlative of intelligent
The superlative of intelligent is most intelligent. E.g. He has a PhD in Rocket Science, he’s clearly the most intelligent person in our family.
The superlative of wide
The superlative of wide is widest. E.g. The Grand Canyon is the widest canyon in the USA.
The superlative of wonderful
The superlative of wonderful is most wonderful. E.g. The most wonderful place in the world is the Grand Canyon, in my personal opinion…
The superlative of bright
The superlative of bright is brightest. For example, the brightest star in the sky is the north star. No, that’s not a star, that one is just a satellite…
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