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Correct use of Adjectives

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Here are some correct use of Adjectives.

Sample Usage

The correct use of some Adjectives

First, foremost

First: first in order.
Nehru was the first Prime Minister of India.
Yuri Gagarian was the first man to go into space.

Foremost: leading, most eminent.
Sushil Kumar Ghosh is the foremost barrister in Calcutta.
Einstein was the foremost scientist of his day.

Elder, older, eldest, oldest

Elder and eldest are used only of persons, not of animals or inanimate things. Elder is never followed by than:
He is the elder of the two brothers.
She is my eldest sister.
Jack is my eldest son.

As Adjectives elder and eldest are now used only of members of the same family.

Older and oldest are used of both living beings and inanimate things:

He is older than his sister.
This fort is older than the one at Agra.
This is the oldest inhabitant of this village.
This elephant is much older than the other one.

Nearest, next

Nearest denotes nearness in space, whereas next refers to position or order.

The nearest restaurant was two blocks away.
I made my way to the nearest telegraph office.
She was sitting next to me.
I was the next to go into the consulting room.

Farther, further

Farther refers to distance.

Let us walk a little farther
Nothing can be farther from the truth (than that)

Further means additiona, beyond what exists now.

This requires further consideration.
He may be given further punishment.
He may continue until further orders.

(Note: Now-a-days, further is being increasingly used in place of farther).

Later, latter, latest, last

Later and latest refer to time.

This is a later edition of the book than that.
A later bulletin announced the death of two more victims of the disaster.
What is the latest news from Berlin?
This seems to be the latest hair-style.

Latter and last refer to order or position.

Of the two major political parties in Britain, the Conservatives and Labour, the latter represents the interests of the working classes.
As to Jekyll and Hyde, the former is a fool and the latter a scoundrel.
This is your last chance to win a prize.
He was the first to come and the last to go.

Many, many a, a great many

Many means ‘numerous' (Many refers to number, while much refers to quantity).

I have many friends in Bombay.
How many people were present at the meeting?

Many a is singular in form but plural in meaning. It is followed by a noun and verb in the singular. The emphasis is on the individual's experience and the implication is that there are many like him.

Many a man feels frustrated because of lack of opportunities.
Many a fool thinks he can have rights without responsibilities.

A great many means ‘a large number'

A great many people attended the wedding.
As we have a great many books in stock, we shall sell them at reduced rates.

Less, lesser

Less: smaller in size, measurement, duration, number, etc.
Less is followed by than:

I have less confidence in him than in you.
There were less than twenty people present.

Lesser: not so great as the other one. Though originally a double comparative, it is now never followed by than:

It is the lesser of the two evils.
A lesser man would have given up the struggle – but not so Dr.Johnson

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