Unit 100. Superlatives – the longest, the most enjoyable, etc.

We use -est or most… to form the superlative of adjectives and adverbs. In general we use -est for shorter words and most… for longer words. (The rules are the same as those for the comparative – see Unit 97.) For example:

long/longest hot/hottest easy/easiest hard/hardest

but: most famous most boring most difficult most expensive

For spelling rules see Appendix 3.

Note that we often use the present perfect (I have done) after a superlative (see also Unit 14a):

  • What’s the best movie you’ve ever seen?

  • That was the most delicious meal I’ve had in a long time.

    We sometimes use most + adjective (without the) to mean very:

  • The book you lent me was most interesting. (= very interesting)

  • Thank you for the money. It was most generous of you. (= very generous)

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