French Superlative Adverbs - Lawless French Grammar - Le plus, le moins (2023)

French Superlative Adverbs - Lawless French Grammar - Le plus, le moins (1)
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Adverbes superlatifs

Superlative adverbs are used to profess absolute superiority or inferiority among two or more things. This superlative lesson will help you be the best at using them.

There are two types of superlatives:

1) Superiority indicates that something is "the ___est" (the biggest, the fastest, the stupidest) or "the most ___" (the most purple, the most tired, the most important). The French equivalent is le plus ___. Note that "superiority" doesn’t necessarily mean superior in the sense of the best, but rather just the most.

2) Inferiority indicates that something is "the least ___" (the least hungry, the least exciting, the least boring). The French equivalent is le moins ___. Again, "inferiority" doesn’t necessarily mean it’s bad.

The grammar involved in using superlative adverbs varies slightly depending on whether you’re comparing adjectives, adverbs, nouns, or verbs.

Superlatives with Adjectives

To make comparisons with adjectives, just put le plus or le moins in front of the adjective. The superlative word itself is invariable, but, as always, the definite article and adjective have to agree with their noun in gender and number.

(Video) French Lesson 137 - Comparative adverbs in French - French Comparatives and superlatives

Cet arbre est le plus grand.This tree is the tallest.
La voiture rouge est la moins bruyante. The red car is the least noisy.

Note that the definite article is required with the superlative even when there’s already an article in front of the noun. Otherwise, you’d be using the comparative.

In the above examples, the comparison is implied – there’s some antecedent that these superlatives are referring back to. When there is no antecedent, you need de after the adjective, followed by whatever you’re comparing to.

Cet arbre est le plus grand des trois.This tree is the tallest of the three.
Ta voiture est la moins bruyante de tous.Your car is the least noisy of all.

Or you can add a relative clause after the superlative.

C’est l’arbre le plus grand qui existe.It’s the biggest tree that exists.
Cette voiture est la moins bruyante que nous avons essayée.*This car is the least noisy that we test drove.

* Why essayée instead of essayé? It’s direct object agreement.

(Video) Practise your French Comparatives -"Plus que, moins que, aussi que"

When a clause follows the superlative, the subjunctive may be required.

Remember that adjective placement varies: most adjectives follow the noun they modify, while some precede it. This applies when using superlatives as well. When the adjective is supposed to follow the noun, the superlative does too. But for adjectives that precede the noun, you have a choice: the superlative can either follow the noun or precede it. When it precedes, there’s only one definite article.

C’est l’arbre le plus grand que j’ai vu.
C’est le plus grand arbre que j’ai vu.
It’s the biggest tree I saw.

These two constructions are equally correct; the only difference is that putting the superlative after the noun makes it a bit stronger, more emphatic.

The adjectives bon and mauvais have special superlative forms: le meilleur and le pire. More about this in a future lesson.

(Video) French Comparative And Superlative // French Grammar Course // Lesson 29 🇫🇷

Superlatives with Adverbs

Comparing adverbs is much the same, but you don’t have to worry about agreement, since adverbs are invariable. As for placement, the superlative goes directly after the verb.

Il parle le plus lentement.He speaks the most slowly.
Essaie de le finir le plus rapidement possible.Try to finish it as quickly as possible.
Elle travaille le moins efficacement.She works the least efficiently.

The adverb bien has a special superlative form: le mieux.

Superlative with Nouns

When comparing the quantity of nouns, superlative adverbs require the preposition de:

  • Superiority = le plus de
  • Inferiority = le moins de
J’ai ramassé le plus de feuilles.I collected the most leaves.
Quel jour voit-on le plus de monde?What day do you see the most people?
Tu fais le moins d’erreurs.You make the fewest mistakes.
Apporte le moins de livres possible.Bring as few books as possible.

Superlative with Verbs

The superlatives always follow the verb.

Je travaille le plus dans ma famille.I work the most in my family
Ce film m’a plu le plus.That movie pleased me the most.
Quel enfant joue le moins?Which child plays the least?
Cette décision nous surprend le moins.That decision surprises us the least.

(Video) Beginner French - 19 (Comparatives and superlatives)

Related lessons

French Superlative Adverbs - Lawless French Grammar - Le plus, le moins (2)En español

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French Superlative Adverbs - Lawless French Grammar - Le plus, le moins (3)


What is the superlative of adverbs French? ›

In French, 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. Marianne parle le plus vite. Marianne speaks fastest. Les enfants crient le plus fort.

What is an example of a superlative sentence French? ›

Ce sont les plus grands garçons de ma classe. Ce sont les garçons les plus grands de ma classe. - They are the tallest boys in my class. Note that you can place the superlative either before or after the noun.

How do you use plus and moins in French? ›

1. You can use plus to mean 'most' depending on the form of the adjective you're using. 2. You can use moins to mean 'least' depending on the form of the adjective you're using.

What are examples of moins? ›

For adjectives and adverbs, an example is Il est moins grand que moi meaning “He is shorter than me.” Or Il court moins vite que moi meaning“He runs slower than me.” For verbs, an example is Il parle moins que moi meaning “He talks less than I do.”

What are examples of superlative adverbs? ›

3 Examples of Superlative Adverbs
  • “She sang the most impressively of all the competitors.”
  • “Catherine moves the least gracefully on stage.”
  • “Hansa was the best prepared for the test.”
Sep 2, 2021

What are the rules for superlatives in French? ›

We construct the superlative by using le/la/les plus + adjective or le/la/les moins + adjective. The adjective's ending agrees with the noun it is describing. Example: Claire est la plus rapide.

What are 3 adverbs in French? ›

Some adverbs have forms that are distinct from adjectives and must be memorized.
  • alors (then)
  • après (afterward)
  • assez (enough)
  • aujourd'hui (today)
  • aussi (also, too)
  • beaucoup (much)
  • bientôt (soon)
  • comme (as)

What is superlative adjective give at least 3 examples? ›

Superlative adjectives
  • My house is the largest one in our neighborhood.
  • This is the smallest box I've ever seen.
  • Your dog ran the fastest of any dog in the race.
  • We all threw our rocks at the same time. My rock flew the highest. (" of all the rocks" is understood)

What is a good sentence for superlative? ›

He went on to say that it is an industry of superlatives. The more superlatives you used, the more rubbishy you thought the arguments were. The use of superlatives and exaggerated language really will not help us. I shall not use any unnecessary superlatives.

What is the difference between plus and moins? ›

There are two ways of expressing a superlative in French: Le plus (“the most”) Le moins (“the least”)

How do you combine two sentences in French? ›

Puis is strictly used as a conjunction to join two sentences together and can never be placed at the end of a phrase. Ensuite, however, can be used as a conjunction (as seen above) but can also be used as an adverb and placed at the end of a sentence.

How do you use moins in French time? ›

Moins (less, minus) is used to express time before the hour. Moins le is used before quart to express 15 minutes after the hour. Because midi (noon) and minuit (midnight) are masculine, to say half past, use et demi, as in the following: J'arrive ` midi et demi. (I'm arriving at half past noon.)

What are the four main verbs in French? ›

Big 4 French verbs
  • etre = to be.
  • avoir = to have.
  • aller = to go.
  • faire = to do.

What are some French sentences? ›

Let's dig in!
  • Bonjour. = Good morning. ...
  • Bonne après-midi. = Good afternoon. ...
  • Je m'appelle Mondly. = My name is Mondly. ...
  • Je suis ravi de vous rencontrer. = I'm pleased to meet you. ...
  • Comment ça va ? = How are you? ...
  • Bien, merci. Et vous-même ? ...
  • J'aimerais une bière. = I'd like a beer. ...
  • Je suis désolé. = I'm sorry.

How many French adverbs are there? ›

Common French Adverbs: A list of 120 Commonly Used in French.

What are the 10 examples of adverb sentences? ›

  • He swims well.
  • He ran quickly.
  • She spoke softly.
  • James coughed loudly to attract her attention.
  • He plays the flute beautifully. ( after the direct object)
  • He ate the chocolate cake greedily. ( after the direct object)

What are the 7 types of adverbs with examples? ›

The different types of adverbs are:
  • Adverbs of manner.
  • Adverbs of time.
  • Adverbs of place.
  • Adverbs of frequency.
  • Adverbs of degree.
  • Conjunctive adverbs.

What are the 50 examples of adverb of manner? ›

Here's a list of 50 common adverbs of manner, with examples of verbs we can use them with.
Adverbs of manner list.
Adverb of manner A-DExamples of usage
cautiouslyspeak cautiously, act cautiously
cheerfullysmile cheerfully, whistle cheerfully
clearlyspeak clearly, explain something clearly
closelylook closely
10 more rows

What is the formula for superlatives? ›

To use a superlative, you simply add “-est” or “-iest” at the end of the adjective, or if there are more than two syllables in the word, then you add the word “most” before it. For example: “It was the most frightening experience of my life.”

What are the 4 rules for adjectives in French? ›

When you use an adjective it must agree with the noun it is describing in both gender – masculine or feminine – and number – singular or plural. This means that French adjectives can have up to four different forms: masculine singular; feminine singular; masculine plural; and feminine plural.

What is the comparative of adverbs in French? ›

The comparative of adverbs (French: les degrés de l'adverbe) is formed using the same phrases as for adjectives. In general we differ between two regular comparative forms: the Comparative (French: le comperatif de supériorité/ d'inferorité) which compares two things or persons.

What is the comparative and superlative adverb? ›

With short adverbs that do not end in -ly comparative and superlative forms are identical to adjectives: add -er to form the comparative and -est to form the superlative. If the adverb ends in e, remove it before adding the ending. Adverb.

What is a superlative adjective or adverb? ›

A superlative adjective is an adjective used in comparisons to describe something as being of the highest degree or extreme. We use superlative adjectives when making comparisons of three or more people or things. The words biggest and fastest are examples of superlative adjectives.

What are the four grammatical ways that adverbs can be used in French? ›

French Adverb Placement
  • Short adverbs that modify a verb usually follow the conjugated verb. ...
  • Adverbs of frequency are usually placed after the verb. ...
  • Adverbs of time that refer to specific days can be placed at the beginning or end of the sentence. ...
  • Long adverbs are usually placed at the beginning or end of the sentence.
Feb 25, 2020

How many types of adverbs are there in French? ›

Demain is an adverb, but so are probablement, bien, malheureusement or déjà. One common way of classifying adverbs is to divide them into four main types: adverbs of time, adverbs of place, adverbs of manner, adverbs of degree (including degrees of certainty) .

How do you write a comparative and superlative sentence? ›

Adjectives with two syllables can form the comparative either by adding -er or by preceeding the adjective with more. These adjectives form the superlative either by adding -est or by preceeding the adjective with most. In many cases, both forms are used, although one usage will be more common than the other.

What is the superlative of beautiful? ›

beautiful (comparative more beautiful, superlative most beautiful)

What is the rule of comparative and superlative? ›

To form the comparative, we add -er to the end of the adjective. To form the superlative, we add -est to the end of the adjective. * When an adjective ends in the letter E, we just add the -R (for comparatives) or -ST (for superlatives).

How do you use superlative in a sentence? ›

We use the with superlative adjectives: It was the happiest day of my life. Everest is the highest mountain in the world. That's the best film I have seen this year.

What are the superlative words? ›

What is a Superlative? Superlative Adjectives are words used to describe a noun when comparing it to two or more nouns to the highest or lowest degree. Think: big, bigger, biggest, or small, smaller, smallest.

How do you identify a superlative adjective? ›

Language - adjectives rules for forming comparative and superlative adjectives
  1. Most adjectives of one syllable form the comparative by adding 'er' and the superlative by adding 'est'. ...
  2. When an adjective ends in 'e', add 'r' for the comparative and 'st' for the superlative forms of the adjective.
Oct 17, 2022

What are 10 examples of adverbs? ›

abnormally absentmindedly accidentally actually adventurously afterwards almost always annually anxiously arrogantly awkwardly bashfully beautifully bitterly bleakly blindly blissfully boastfully boldly bravely briefly brightly briskly broadly busily calmly carefully carelessly cautiously certainly cheerfully clearly ...

What are the 12 types of adverbs? ›

Some of the main types of adverbs are:
  • Adverbs of manner.
  • Adverbs of place.
  • Adverbs of time.
  • Adverbs of frequency.
  • Adverbs of purpose.
  • Adverbs of degree.
  • Conjunctive adverbs.
  • Focusing adverbs.
Oct 20, 2022


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