Comparative and superlative of Dutch adjectives
Definition and usage of the comparative and superlative of Dutch adjectives
'De trappen van vergelijking' (the steps of comparison) are used to turn the adjective into a comparative or into a superlative. The comparative and superlative are formed by adding suffixes to the adjective.
|To turn an adjective into a comparative.||
|To turn an adjective into a superlative.||
1) Forming the comparative of Dutch adjectives
The Dutch comparative compares the characteristics of two objects with each other that are not equal. These are formed by adding the suffix '-er' or '-ere'.
- Een vreemder huis. (A weirder house.)
- De schonere lucht. (The more clean air.)
Note that a vowel disappeared in 'schonere' that is derrived form 'schoon' (clean). This has to do with a change in the syllables, because the stress is now somewhere else in the word.
If the adjective ends in '-r', '-der' or '-dere' will be added: Het raardere meisje. (The weirder girl.)
2) Forming the superlative of Dutch adjectives
The Dutch superlative compares an object with other objects which surpasses everything. These are formed by adding the suffix '-st' or '-ste'. The definite articles 'de' or 'het' are always before the superlative.
- Het vreemdste huis. (The weirdest house.)
- De schoonste lucht. (The cleanest air.)
Dutch irregular comparatives
The Dutch language has some adjectives that don't follow the regular rules when forming the comparative and superlative. The following table shows a list of Dutch adjectives that are irregular:
|Jan is beter in tennis dan Henk.||Jan is better at tennis than Henk.|
|Zij eten het liefst vis.||They prefer to eat fish.|
|Hij eet het meest.||He eats the most.|
|Jij hebt minder les dan ik.||You got less class than me.|
In Dutch you can also use 'meer' (more) or 'meest' (most) to form the comparative, but is not used as frequently as in English. It is only used for long words, that are hard to pronounce in another form or to emphasize something:
- Hij is het meest fantastisch van hen allemaal. (He is the most fantastic of all of them.)
- Zij heeft de meest praktische aanpak. (She has the most practical approach.)
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