Comparison of adjectives and adverbs (A401H)


There are three degrees of comparison for adjectives and adverbs: positive, comparative and superlative.

Here is how this works in English:

Positive

Comparative

Superlative

Adjective   

happy              

happier/more   

happiest/very happy

Adverb     

happily

more happily

most/very happily

Here is the equivalent in Latin:

Positive

Comparative

Superlative

Adjective

laetus-a-um

laetior

laetissimus-a-um

Adverb

laete

laetius

laetissime

NB

Adjectives which end in “-r” form their superlatives by adding “-rimus”, e.g. celer (fast),celerrimus (very fast).

Adjectives which end in “-ilis” end their superlatives with “-illimus”, e.g. difficilis (difficult),difficillimus (very difficult).

quam + superlative adverb = “as …. as possible”, e.g. quam celerrime = “as quickly as possible”

Irregular Forms

Note the following irregular forms:

Adjectives

Positive

Comparative

Superlative

good

bonus-a-um

melior

optimus-a-um

bad, wicked

malus-a-um

peior

pessimus-a-um

big, large, great

magnus-a-um

maior

maximus-a-um

small

parvus-a-um

minor

minimus-a-um

much

multus-a-um

plus

plurimus-a-um

many

multi-ae-a

plures-a

plurimi-ae-a

Adverbs

Positive

Comparative

Superlative

well

bene

melius

optime

badly, wickedly

male

peius

pessime

greatly

magnopere

magis

maxime