5 Important Ideas for Utilizing French Superlatives to Emphasize Your Opinions

Greatest, worst, most, least. Whether or not used as goal information or just for emphasis and hyperbole, superlatives assist us categorical one of the best of one of the best of our concepts. However French superlatives work a bit in a different way from English. There are particular formulation for utilizing them with completely different elements of speech in French, however they’re among the many best constructions to be taught! 

Superlatives in French sound “tremendous,” however they’ll categorical each constructive and adverse concepts. Rosetta Stone may help you get the cling of the completely different constructions and even the expressions that come from superlatives via our Dynamic Immersion methodology of language studying. We predict it’s the best, most pure, and funnest option to be taught French superlatives. 

What’s the distinction between a comparative and a superlative in French? 

Earlier than we dive into useful tricks to understanding French superlatives, you first have to know what they’re and usually are not. The French comparative and superlative are actually related. Nevertheless, whereas the comparative exhibits how any two concepts relate or examine to one another (taller), the superlative units one concept aside from the remainder as an excessive or the best diploma, whether or not most or least (tallest). 

Comparatives in French are available a number of varieties and sentence constructions, however normally comprise the phrases: 

  • plus que = greater than
  • moins que = lower than
  • aussi que = as… as 
  • autant que = as a lot or as many as 

Superlatives in French are structured a bit in a different way. It typically accommodates a particular article (le, la, les = the), and can usually translate in English to most, least, or an adjective ending in -est.

  • La plus intéressante = probably the most fascinating
  • Les moins chères = the least costly
  • Le plus vite = the quickest
French ComparativeEnglish Which meansFrench SuperlativeEnglish Which means
Le bleu est plus beau que le rouge. The blue is extra stunning than the crimson. Le bleu est la couleur la plus belle. Blue is probably the most stunning coloration. 
Les pommes de terre sont moins chères que les navets. The potatoes are inexpensive than the turnips. Les pommes de terre sont les moins chères. The potatoes are the least costly. 

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1. Know the distinction between superior and inferior French superlatives

Bear in mind, the superlative signifies an excessive or the strongest diploma of a descriptor. This might go in both course from most or least. Each of those examples are thought of superior, since they use plus (most), even the one which expresses a small measurement. It’s not in regards to the measurement however the degree of description (large, larger, greatest). 

  • La baleine bleue est l’animal le plus grand. = The blue whale is the largest animal. 
  • Mercure est la planète la plus petite. = Mercury is the smallest planet. 

Each of the next examples are thought of inferior, since they use moins (least), even the one that would appear to be expressing a constructive concept. 

  • La biologie est la classe la moins difficile. = Biology is the least tough class.
  • Elle est la prof la moins stricte. = She is the least strict instructor. 
young woman squatting to pet a reddish brown dog

2. Learn to place French superlatives in sentences

Whereas a lot of the common French superlatives are going to be recognizable as plus ou moins (kind of), you’ll need to construction your sentences in response to the a part of speech you’re utilizing.

When utilizing adjectives

To make use of a superlative with a French adjective, use this construction: 

particular article + plus + adjective

  • le plus grand = the tallest
  • la plus heureuse = the happiest
  • les plus tristes = the saddest

Each the particular article and the adjective might want to agree with the noun being described in each gender and quantity. In different phrases, you’ll have to establish whether or not the noun is masculine or female and singular or plural. (You’ll be able to be taught extra about French gender guidelines in the event you’d like extra steerage.)

The examples above don’t require one other noun within the sentence, in the event you already know what noun you might be referring to.  For instance, in the event you’ve been discussing a bunch of puppies, you may say: 

  • Bruno est le plus actif! = Bruno is probably the most energetic.

In case you are specifying a particular noun throughout the sentence, the French noun being described comes earlier than the superlative as a substitute of after it: 

Particular article + noun + particular article + plus + adjective. 

  • Minou est le chaton le plus petit. = Minou is the smallest kitten. 
  • Les lapins sont les animaux les plus mignons.= Rabbits are the cutest animals. 

There are just a few adjectives in French that sometimes precede the noun, reminiscent of jolie (fairly) and belle (stunning). These adjectives can come earlier than plus

  • Elle est la plus belle femme. = She is probably the most stunning lady. 

When utilizing adverbs

To make use of a French superlative with an adverb, use the construction:

le plus / le moins + adverb

  • le plus facilement = probably the most simply
  • le moins fréquemment = the least regularly 

You don’t want to fret about different types of the article or any sort of gender settlement, as a result of French adverbs are invariable or fixed.

  • Je parle italien le plus couramment. = I converse Italian probably the most fluently. 

When emphasizing verbs

If you wish to categorical who does an motion probably the most or the least, merely use le plus or le moins after the verb. 

  • Je mange le plus. = I eat probably the most. 
  • Il étudie le moins ! = He research the least! 

3. Be accustomed to exceptions and customary irregular superlatives in French

There are irregular superlatives in French similar to in English. We don’t say that Rosetta Stone is the “goodest” app for language studying, we are saying that we’re the “greatest.” Let’s check out a number of the frequent superlatives that defy the foundations.

Meilleur / meilleure

Meilleur / meilleure can be utilized in each a French comparative (higher) and a superlative (greatest) means. It’s used with nouns and should agree in gender and quantity with the noun it describes. To create the superlative, you’ll use a particular French article like le meilleur / la meilleure.  

  • Comparative: Anne est une meilleure poète que moi. = Anne is a greater poet than me. 
  • Superlative: Elle est la meilleure poète ici. = She is one of the best poet right here. 


Mieux can be utilized in each a comparative (“higher than”) and a superlative (“greatest”) means. It’s used with verbs and adjectives. 

  • Comparative: Je lis mieux que je parle français. = I learn higher than I converse French. 
  • Superlative: Elle est la chanteuse la mieux préparée ce soir ! = She is one of the best ready singer tonight. 

Once more, to create the superlative in French, you’ll use le / la mieux. 

  • La recette de ses biscuits est le secret le mieux gardé. = The recipe for her cookies is one of the best saved secret. 
  • Ben dessine le mieux de tous les élèves. = Ben attracts one of the best of the entire college students. 


Pire means the other of mieux. It can be used as each a French comparative and superlative (worse than / worst). 

  • (comparative) Je danse pire que je chante ! = I dance worse than I sing!
  • (superlative) C’est le pire plat au menu.  = It’s the worst dish on the menu. 

To create the superlative, you’ll use le / la pire. 

  • Notre équipe est la pire de la ligue. = Our workforce is the worst of the league. 
  • Ce travail est le pire.  = This job is the worst. 


Moindre is used to imply “lesser” or “least.”  To create the superlative, you’ll use le / la moindre. 

  • On a choisi le moindre de deux maux. = We selected the lesser of two evils. 
  • C’est le moindre de mes problèmes ! = It’s the least of my issues! 

4. Present emphasis with superlatives within the subjunctive temper

We’ve seen how the superlative may help you categorical extremes and absolutes. One other perform of the superlative is to precise a little bit of dramatic judgment or hyperbole when mixed with the subjunctive temper. The subjunctive temper is a type of the verb that helps us to precise doubts and uncertainty. This could be in distinction to the “indicative” temper which is used to precise extra goal information. 

Let’s check out the distinction: 

Within the indicative temper, you should use the superlative to state or point out a reality. Whether or not or not it really is true, you might be stating the very fact as if you consider it to be true. 

  • C’est le poisson le plus grand que j’ai pris ! = It’s the largest fish that I’ve caught! 

But when we use the subjunctive temper alongside the superlative, the tone switches from an announcement of reality to extra of an expressive option to exaggerate or emphasize the concept. This manner of utilizing the superlative doesn’t absolutely decide to the factual validity of your assertion. In English, we might categorical this through the use of just a few additional phrases, however this nuance will be completed with solely a distinct verb kind in French—a single letter, on this case.

  • C’est le poisson le plus grand que j’aie pris ! = It’s (in all probability) the largest fish that I’ve ever caught!

Within the earlier examples, there isn’t a distinction in pronunciation between  j’ai and j’aie, so you’ll solely discover it in written French, however some verbs change types drastically within the subjunctive. 

  • C’est le devoir le plus difficile que je fais. = It’s probably the most tough homework that I do.
  • C’est le devoir le plus difficile que je fasse. = It is likely to be probably the most tough homework that I do. 
  • Elle est la personne la plus célèbre que je connais. = She is probably the most well-known individual that I know (personally).
  • Elle est la personne la plus célèbre que je connaisse. =  She might be probably the most well-known individual I know (personally).

>>Get to know the subjunctive. Rosetta Stone’s tutors may help demystify this temper! 

Superlative phrases are sometimes a part of frequent idioms and expressions in French. Add these to your conversations to converse French in an thrilling and pure sounding means ! 

French Superlative ExpressionEnglish Which means
au moinsnot less than
au plusat most
au plus tardon the newest
au plus tôton the earliest
dans le plus grand respect dein strict accordance with
dans le plus easy appareilstark-naked; in a single’s “birthday swimsuit”
de la plus haute significanceof highest significance
du plus loin que je me souvienneway back to i can keep in mind
écrire les plus belles pages de son histoireto take pleasure in one of the best moments of 1’s life
être au plus basto have hit all-time low
c’est le moins qu’on puisse dire ! / pour le moins,to say the least!
c’est le moins que je puisse faire ! it’s the least i might do
plus ou moinskind of
ni plus ni moinsno extra, no much less
pas le moins du mondenot within the least! not within the slightest!
dans le meilleur des casin one of the best case situation
donner le meilleur de soi-mêmeto present it your greatest
du meilleur effetspectacular
être au meilleur de sa formeto be in nice form
garder le meilleur pour la finto avoid wasting one of the best for final
le meilleur reste à venirone of the best is but to return
le meilleur ami / la meilleure amieone of the best buddy
pour le meilleur et pour le pirefor higher or for worse
que le meilleur gagne !could one of the best (noun) win! 
au pireat worst, the worst that may occur
craindre le pireto concern the worst
aller pour le mieuxto be going rather well
au mieuxat greatest
ça vaut mieuxit could be greatest
être au mieux avecto get alongside very effectively
à la moindre eventon the slightest alternative; on the drop of a hat
la moindre des politessesthe least one can do
la loi du moindre effortthe trail of least resistance; the straightforward means out 
ne pas avoir la moindre idéeto not have the slightest concept

Utilizing just some of those expressions in French may help add some aptitude to your speech as you talk. French superlatives can go a good distance in serving to add emphasis to your speech and writing. 

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