Here is a list of errors that ESL students often make in the use of adjectives.
- Incorrect: She is more stronger than her sister.
- Correct: She is stronger than her sister.
Avoid double comparatives. Adjectives of one syllable usually form their comparatives by adding –er to the positive. Longer adjectives take more.
- Incorrect: Bombay is further from Delhi than Agra.
- Correct: Bombay is farther from Delhi than Agra.
Further means ‘additional’. Farther is used to talk about distance.
- Incorrect: You have much books.
- Correct: You have many books.
- Incorrect: I have many work to do.
- Correct: I have much work to do.
Use much with uncountable nouns. Use many with countable nouns.
- Incorrect: She is growing strong and strong everyday.
- Correct: She is growing stronger and stronger everyday.
The comparative form of the adjective is used in structures like these.
- Incorrect: Let’s go quiet somewhere.
- Correct: Let’s go somewhere quiet.
The adjective usually goes after expressions like somewhere.
- Incorrect: I can’t afford that a big car.
- Correct: I can’t afford that big a car.
Note the pattern: that + adjective + a/an + noun
- Incorrect: Tell me the last news.
- Correct: Tell me the latest news.
Latest means ‘the most recent’. Last means ‘the previous one’.
- Incorrect: I have less worries than you.
- Correct: I have fewer worries than you.
Use less with uncountable nouns. Use fewer with countable nouns.
- Incorrect: He wasted his all wealth.
- Correct: He wasted all his wealth.
Quantifiers like all, both and half go before possessives.