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Comparing and contrasting: modifying comparatives

Do you know how to compare things in English?

Comparing and contrasting – modifying comparatives

When we want to talk about similarities and differences we can use adjectives in their comparative forms …

  • Max is taller than Judy.
  • You’re more intelligent than me.

or we can use (not) as (adjective) as

  • Her hair is as long as mine.
  • This one’s not as interesting as his first book. Remember that ‘not as interesting as’ means ‘less interesting than'.

We can also use expressions like different from, similar to and the same as.

  • She’s very different from her sister. They’re very different.
  • Sri Lankan food is similar to Indian food. They’re similar.
  • Andrew is the same age as Lily. Their ages are the same. We use same with nouns.

Modifying comparisons

A big difference – much, a lot, far

We can modify comparative adjectives to show that there is a big difference between things.

  • Sales in July were much higher than sales in June.
  • She’s a lot taller than you.
  • This one’s far more expensive than the blue one.

We can also say that things are completely or totally different from each other.

  • They may be twins but they’re completely different from each other.

A small difference – slightly, a little, a bit, not much

We can show there is a small difference.

  • Sales in August were slightly lower than sales in July.
  • You’re a bit younger than me.
  • These are not much more expensive than those.

No difference – exactly, more or less, roughly

We can show that there is no difference or almost no difference.

  • He’s exactly the same age as me. ( No difference)
  • The figures for December are more or less the same as the figures for November. (a tiny difference)



Language level

Intermediate: B1