Easy English GrammarVocabulary in English

Ways of Comparing in English

Ways of Comparing in English

Let’s take a look at some ways of comparing English. While you’re here, check out Money Vocabulary: 42 Words to Talk About Money in English.

OK. Let’s play that world-famous game, Compare the Circles.

What? You don’t know it?

Well, it’s really easy!

First of all, can you compare these circles?

Circle A (a big circle) and circle B (a small circle)

Easy, right? “Circle A is bigger than circle B.”

OK — what about these circles?

Circle A (a big circle) and circle B (a very small circle)

OK — “Circle A is bigger than circle B.”

Again.

And now?

Circle A (a very big circle) and circle B (a small circle)

Did you say, “Circle A is bigger than circle B,” again?

OK. You’re correct, but there are lots of other, more interesting ways to compare things in English.

Let’s take a look at them!

Free test - Gymglish with Clark and Miller

Ways of Comparing in English: With Adjectives

Remember when you first learned how to compare things in English?

I’m guessing you probably learned to compare things using adjectives — talking about how Moscow is bigger than London, for example.

Or how pasta is tastier than salad.

And why not? Adjectives are probably the most common way we compare things.

But there are lots of different ways we can do it:

Ways of comparing in English: adjectives

Click here for a text version of the image above.

Adjectives with one syllable

smart
smarter
even smarter
the smartest

less smart
even less smart
the least smart

Adjectives with more than two syllables

ridiculous
more ridiculous
even more ridiculous
the most ridiculous

less ridiculous
even less ridiculous
the least ridiculous

Adjectives with two syllables

smelly
smellier / more smelly
even smellier / even more smelly
the smelliest / the most smelly

Making them stronger or weaker

a bit / a tad / a little / a tiny bit higher
somewhat higher
much / way / far / considerably / a whole lot higher

easily / by far the smallest
the smallest by a long shot / by a long way

Using them in a sentence

Art is more interesting than …
… maths. (noun)
… I thought. (SVO*)
… what you’re doing. (who/what/where … + SVO)
… ever.

*SVO = subject-verb-object

He’s the tallest kid …
… in the room. (place)
… out of his friends. (out of …)
… (that) I’ve ever seen. (that + SVO)
… to ever walk the earth. (to + verb 1)
… of all.

Using “as … as”

Nowhere near as fast as Larry.
Not as fast as Larry.
Not quite as fast as Larry.
Just as fast as Larry.

Not as far as …
… Sydbourne. (noun)
… I thought. (SVO)
… where we were last week. (who/what/where … + SVO)

Ways of Comparing in English: With Adverbs

Comparing things doesn’t stop at adjectives!

Sometimes we want to compare the different ways people do things.

That’s where adverbs step in:

Ways of comparing in English: adverbs
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Comparing with adverbs

He speaks quickly.
She speaks more quickly.
He speaks even more quickly.
She speaks the most quickly.

Using them in a sentence

He’s singing more loudly than …
… Metallica. (noun)
… he needs to. (SVO)
… when he was two years old. (who/what/where … + SVO)

That one shines the brightest …
… in the sky. (place)
… out of all the stars. (out of …)
… that I’ve ever seen. (that + SVO)

Ways of Comparing in English: With Nouns

When we want to compare two (or more) things, we usually use adjectives.

But sometimes, the adjective just isn’t quite enough.

Sometimes what you want to say can be better expressed with a noun.

Remember, we can’t use just any noun.

For example, you can’t say that your table is more of a table than my table.

They’re both just tables.

Also — comparing tables like that is strange.

But there are some nouns that have a feeling of opinion about them.

Nouns like “success,” “idiot,” “challenge” and “difficulty.”

Here’s how to use them:

Ways of comparing in English: nouns
Click here for a text version of the image above.

Comparing with nouns

an idiot
more of an idiot
even more of an idiot
the biggest idiot

less of an idiot
even less of an idiot

Using them in a sentence

It’s the biggest discovery …
… in South America. (place)
… out of the team. (out of …)
… that the world has seen. (that + SVO)
… of all.
… ever.

Using “as … as”

Mr Derek is not as much of a genius as Albert Einstein.
Albert Einstein was just as much of a genius as Stephen Hawking.

Ways of Comparing in English: With Verbs

Finally! The real action! The verbs!

Comparing things with verbs is actually quite easy.

You usually just add “more than” to the sentence.

Ways of comparing in English: verbs

Click here for a text version of the image above.

Comparing with verbs

He speaks more than he listens.

Making them stronger or weaker

He’s played guitar much / way / far/ considerably / a whole lot more than …
She’s played guitar by far the most.
She’s played guitar the most by a long shot / by a long way.

Using them in a sentence

We go on holiday now more than …
… you. (noun)
… we used to. (SVO)
… when I had your job. (who/what/where … + SVO)
… ever.

He uses the ’90s stereo the most …
… in the library. (place)
… out of the class. (out of …)
… (that) I’ve seen. (that + SVO)
… of all.
… ever.

Using “as … as”

My cat sleeps as much as …
… your cat. (noun)
… she eats. (SVO)


OK — now for the fun question:

Give me three differences between Elon Musk and a cat.

Answer in the comments!

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4 thoughts on “Ways of Comparing in English

  1. Hi Mr. Clark. Mr. Elon Musk is considerably bigger than his cat. He’s also richer than it. And finally, he’s probably going to live longer than his damn cat.

    1. I’d say that “my cat sleeps as much as mine” doesn’t make much sense as “mine” in this sentence would mean “my cat.”

      The first example makes more sense!

      Thanks for commenting!

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