Degrees Of Comparison Exercise

English adjectives and adverbs recognize three degrees – the positive, the comparative and the superlative. It is usually possible to express the same idea using any of these forms. Note that the structures are different.

Study the sentence given below.

  • Tiruvalluvar is the greatest of Tamil poets.

This sentence uses the superlative adjective greatest. We can express the same idea using comparative and positive adjectives.

  • Tiruvalluvar is greater than any other Tamil poet.

Note the use of the phrase any other. It is very important because the meaning of the sentence would change drastically if we do not use it. Note also the use of the singular noun after any other.

Study the sentence given below.

  • Tiruvallvar is greater than Tamil poets.

The sentence given above makes a comparison between Tiruvalluvar and Tamil poets and states that he is greater. Actually Tiruvalluvar is also a Tamil poet. To express that idea we have to use the phrase any other.

Now let’s try to express the same idea using a positive adjective.

  • No other Tamil poet is as great as Tiruvalluvar.

Note the use of the phrase no other.

Another example is given below.

  • Kamban is one of the greatest of Tamil poets.

While changing this sentence into other degrees of comparison, you have to consider the following points.

The sentence given above does not state that Kamban is the greatest Tamil poet. It merely states that he is one of the greatest. That means some Tamil poets are just as good as him, while most others are not so good. In this case, we cannot use the phrase any other. Instead we use the expression most other.

  • Kamban is greater than most other Tamil poets. (Note the use of the plural noun after most other.)

Now let’s express the same idea using the positive degree.

  • Very few Tamil poets are as great as Kamban.

Note the use of the phrase very few. It implies that some poets are just as great as Kamban but most aren’t.

Another example is given below.

He is the cleverest boy in the class. (Superlative)

He is cleverer than any other boy in the class. (Comparative)

No other boy in the class is as clever as him. (Positive)


Rewrite the following sentences using the other degrees of comparison.

1. Swimming is the best kind of exercise.

2. Lead is heavier than any other metal.

3. Shakespeare is greater than any other English playwright.

4. China is one of the largest countries in the world.


1. Swimming is better than any other kind of exercise. / No other kind of exercise is as good as swimming.

2. Lead is the heaviest of all metals. / No other metal is as heavy as lead.

3. Shakespeare is the greatest of all English playwrights. / No other English playwright is as great as Shakespeare.

4. China is larger than most other countries in the world. / Very few countries in the world are as large as China.


Hi, I am Manjusha. This is my blog where I give English grammar lessons and worksheets. You may also want to check out my other blogs IELTS Practice and NCERT Guides

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