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Superlative Adjectives

In Spanish as in English, we use superlatives to express the highest degree of comparisons.

a)      The superlatives that form the adjectives only add a definite article.  For example, valiente is the adjective, más valiente is the comparative, and el más valiente is the superlative.

  • To express the most, one uses the form:

El (la) más+ adjective + (de)

Spanish

English

Lisa es la más bonita de la clase.

Lisa is the prettiest in the class.

*The superlative in relation to the other elements of the same type uses the superlative form followed by the preposition de

  • To express the least, one uses the form:

El (la) menos+ adjective + (de)

Spanish

English

Juan es el chico menos inteligente.

John is the least intelligent boy.

b)      The superlatives that form the adverbs do not use the article.  For example, claramente is the adverb, más claramente is the comparative, and más claramente is the superlative.

  • To express the most using an adverb, one uses the form:

Más+ adverb

Spanish

English

Ella caminó más rápidamente.

She walked more/most quickly.

 
  • To express the least using an adverb, one uses the form:

Menos+ adverb

Spanish

English

Él habla menos lentamente.

He speaks least slowly.

 

c)      The independent superlative can use:

muy, sumamente, extraordinariamente, extremadamente+ adjective or adverb

Spanish

English

Ana es sumamente inteligente.

Ana is extremely intelligent.

 

d)      The adjective + ísimo (a, os, as) is another independent superlative. The adverb + ísimo is used as an independent superlative. 

Adjective/adverb + ísimo (a,os,as)

Spanish

English

La vida es hermosísima.

Life is really beautiful.

Él camina rapidísimo.  

He walks really fast.

 

Some adjectives change their spelling when ísimo is added to the end.  The following is a list of those adjectives:

Spanish

-ísimo

English

Antiguo

Antiquísimo

Very old

Fuerte

Fortísimo

Very strong

Nuevo

Novísimo

Very new

Rico

Riquísimo

Very rich