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The rules for comparisons.

The rules for comparisons are quite simple but even native speakers seem to make
mistakes.

three syllable or more adjectives : put 'more' in front

expensive ----- more expensive

two syllable adjectives not ending in 'y' : put 'more' in front

stupid ----- more stupid

two syllable adjectives ending in 'y' : replace the 'y' by 'ier'

happy -----happier

one syllable adjectives ending in one vowel and one consonant : double the consonant
and add 'er'

big -----bigger

other one syllable adjectives: add 'er'

tall -----taller

Exceptions

good -----better

bad -----worse

far -----further/farther

old -----older/elder

little -----less

With a few exceptions, adverbs normally add 'more'

slowly -----more slowly

easily -----more easily

These are the exceptions

early -----earlier

late -----later

fast -----faster
hard -----harder

near -----nearer

soon -----sooner

Nothing very complicated in any of that but listen to native speakers and you will hear
mistakes. Let's hope you don't make any in the following exercise!

'like' and 'as'

Both of these can be used to talk about things which are similar. The rules about their
use are quite clear but, as we will see later, in informal modern English the rules
appear to be changing.

'like' is a preposition and is followed by a noun or a pronoun

--I look like my father.

--It's not like him to be late.

'as' is a conjunction and is used before a clause.

--My son is a good tennis player, as I was when I was young.

--Oliver died as he lived, drunk.

'as' is also used before prepositional expressions

--In Paris, as in Berlin, the bankers are worried about the state of the Euro.

--Today, as in the 1960's, London is very fashionable.

In more formal English, we often invert the word-order after 'as'

--I'm good at playing golf, as is my son.

--He went to Cambridge University, as did his father.


We also use 'as' with jobs, roles and functions

--I got a Summer job as a waiter.

--He uses my house as his own.

In modern informal American and British English, some people sometimes use 'like'
as a conjunction in the place of 'as' .

--You don't love her like I do.

They also use 'like' to mean 'as if'

--He treats my house like it was his.

These are both considered 'incorrect' by many people but they are becoming so
frequently used that it seems to me that the grammar rules are changing.