Positive, Comparative and Superlative in German

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Positive, Comparative and Superlative in German

Post by Admin » Sat Oct 31, 2015 11:52 am

Positive, comparative and superlative are simply used to represent the degrees of comparison of adjectives.

Positive represents the basic form of adjective (e.g klein), whereas comparative represents a greater degree, a comparison between two persons or things (Er ist kleiner als seine Frau – He is smaller than his wife). Superlative represents the highest degree of comparison among three or more persons or things (Er ist der kleinste in der Gruppe - He is the smallest in the group)

Comparative is formed by adding –er at the end of the adjective (e.g. kleiner)

Superlative is formed by placing am before the adjective and adding –sten at the end of the adjective (e.g am kleinsten) or with the definite article (der/die/das) before the adjective and adding -(e)ste at the end of the adjective (der/die/das kleinste)


Now let’s go through some examples:


Positiv (Positive) – Komparativ (Comparative) – Superlativ (Superlative)


gut (good) - besser (better) - am besten (the best) [or der/die/das beste]

Ich bin so gut in Mathe wie du. – I am so good in math as you are.

Er ist besser in Physik als ich. – He is better in physics than I.

Am besten fährst du mit dem Bus nach Berlin, das ist billiger. – Best you travel by bus to Berlin, it’s cheaper.

Sie ist die beste Freundin meiner Mutter. – She is my mother’s best friend.


groß (big) - größer (bigger) - am größten (biggest) [or der/die/das größte]

Ist China so groß wie Kanada? – Is China as large as Canada?

Nein, Kanada is größer als China. – No, Canada is larger than China.

Russland ist am größten. – Russia is the largest.


China ist ein großes Land. - China is a big country.

Kanada ist ein größeres Land. – Canada is larger.

Russland ist das größte Land der Welt. – Russia is the largest country in the world.


gern (gladly) - lieber (preferably) - am liebsten (most preferably)

Ich gehe gern in die Disko. - I like going to the disco.

Ich gehe lieber in die Tanzschule. – I'd rather go to the dance school.

Ich gehe am liebsten ins Freiluftkonzert. - I like it most going to the open-air concert.

das Freiluftkonzert – open-air concert


Ich gehe gern schwimmen. – I like to go swimming.

Ich gehe lieber zum Spazieren. – I'd rather go for a walk.

Ich gehe am liebsten zum Fußballspielen. – I like it most to playing football.


schnell (fast) – schneller (faster) – am schnellsten (fastest) [oder der/die/das schnellste]

Ein Gepard kann sehr schnell laufen, viel schneller als ein Pferd. Mit einer Geschwindigkeit von über 100 km/h ist der Gepard das schnellste Landtier der Welt.

- Cheetah can run very fast, much faster than a horse. With a speed of over 100 km/h cheetah is the fastest land animal on earth

der Gepard – cheetah (pl.die Geparde)

das Pferd – horse (pl. die Pferde)

das Landtier – land animal (pl. die Landtiere)

die Welt – world (pl. die Welten)

die Geschwindigkeit – speed (pl. die Geschwindigkeiten)

mit einer Geschwindigkeit – with the speed of

[Preposition ‚mit‘ requires the case dative, and in dative – ‘die’ changes to ‘der’ (in indefinite form – eine to einer)]


viel (much) - mehr (more) - am meisten (the most)

Er verdient viel zu wenig! - He earns too little!

Je mehr Geld ich verdiene, desto modernere Autos kann ich mir leisten. - The more money I make, the more modern cars I can afford.

verdienen – to earn (past & past participle: verdiente, verdient)

Die meisten Studenten dieser Sprachschule sind bei der DSH durchgefallen – Most of the students of this language school failed to pass the DSH test.

DSH - Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang (German language examination for university entrance)

Verb: durchfallen – to fail (past & past participle: fiel durch, durchgefallen)

Die meiste Zeit unseres Urlaubs, waren wir mit Fahrrädern unterwegs - Most of the time of our vacation, we were traveling with bikes.

der Urlaub – vacation/holidays

das Fahrrad – bicycle (pl. die Fahrräder)

unterwegs – on the way


klein (small) – kleiner (smaller) - am kleinsten (smallest) [oder der/die/das kleinste]

Mein neues Notebook ist das derzeit kleinste auf dem Markt. Es ist nur 25.4 cm. – My new laptop is currently the smallest on the market. It is only 25.4 cm.


schön (beautiful) - schöner (more beautiful) - am schönsten (most beautiful)

Monika ist so schön wie ihre Mutter. - Monika is as beautiful as her mother


lang (long) - länger (longer) - am längsten (longest) [oder der/die/das längste]

Die Donau ist länger als der Rhein. - Danube is longer than the Rhine.

Note here,

die Donau (feminine) – the Danube, and

der Rhein (masculine) - Rhine


Wann ist die längste Nacht des Jahres? - When is the longest night of the year?

Die Nacht vom 21. auf den 22. Dezember ist die längste des Jahres. Danach werden die Nächte wieder kürzer. - The night of 21 to 22 December is the longest of the year. Afterwards, the nights are getting shorter.


Ein kleines Gespräch (A short conversation):

Achim: Wann ist die längste Nacht dieses Jahres, Mike? (When is the longest night of the year, Mike?)

Mike: Heute.....(Today........)

Achim: Wieso? (Why so/ How so?)

Mike: Jahhhhh.......Meine Ex-Freundin hat heute meinen besten Freund geheiratet! (Jahhhhh........My ex-girlfriend married my best friend today!)


hoch (high) - höher (higher) - am höchsten (highest) or der/die/das höchste

Der Mount Everest ist mit 8,848 m der höchste Berg der Erde – The Mount Everest with 8.848 m is the highest mountain of the earth

der Berg – mountain (pl. die Berge)


dunkel (dark) - dunkler (darker) - am dunkelsten (darkest) [oder der/die/das dunkelste]

Der Tag als Daniela mich verlassen hat, war der dunkelste Tag in meinem Leben - The day Daniela left me, was the darkest day in my life.


kurz (short) – kürzer (shorter) - am kürzesten (shortest) [oder der/die/das kürzeste]

Der 21. Dezember ist der kürzeste Tag des Jahres. - December 21 is the shortest day of the year


Few more adjectives:

kalt (cold) - kälter (colder) - am kältesten (coldest)

warm (warm) - warmer (warmer) - am wärmsten (warmest)

hell (bright) – heller (brighter) - am hellsten (brightest)

billig (cheap) – billiger (cheaper) - am billigsten (cheapest)

teuer (expensive) – teurer (more expensive) - am teuersten (most expensive)

hart (hard) – härter (harder) - am härtsten (hardest)



*Recommended:

Read wonderful articles (English & German) on Science & Tech, Environment, Health and many other topics only on BlogArena.


*Your questions, suggestions/corrections are highly welcome or write to us- info@shamskm.com

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