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digne, worthy; grand, great; jeune, young; joli, pretty; mauvais, bad; méchant, wicked; meilleur, better; moindre, less; petit, little; saint, holy; tel, such; tout, all; vieux, old; vilain, ugly.

The meaning of some adjectives, however, differs according to their position before or after the noun; as,

Un honnête homme, an honest man. Un homme honnête, a polite man. Un grand homme, a man of great Un homme grand, a tall man.


Un brave homme, a worthy man.

See APPENDICE, Place de l'adjectif.

Un homme brave, a brave man.


A young man. (An) important news. A good study. An agreeable

nouvelle f.

jeune agréable amusement. A valuable collection of old manuscripts. A cultivated




country is always admired. campagne f. est toujours admiré

étude f.

manuscrits m.

cultivé (65) (The) idleness is fatal to (the) paresse f.

health. The Italian language is easy. italien langue f.

santé f.


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There is a beautiful

part f.

Voilà * beau

(The) wolves are loups sont

meadow. The Greek language is studied.

prairie f.

bold and ferocious. hardi féroce



The manners of those good countrymen are mœurs f. pl. ces

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paysans sont

They are (of the) deceitful promises.
Ce sont
trompeur promesse f.

speech. They are troublesome. The discours m. Ils sont importun

Fear the avenging thunderbolt. That is your Craignez vengeur foudre f.

C'est votre

favourite reading. This is for the public good. Have you a good favori lecture f. C'est pour bien m. Avez-vous


plume f.

The enchanting style of Bernardin de St. Pierre. The enchanteur -m.

The sublime conceptions pensée f.

enchanting voice of that actress.
enchanteur voix f. cette actrice
of Homer. The general officers of the army.
général officiers

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avenues of Versailles. The public authority. (The) jealousy is

allée f.

odious. Gentlemen, be attentive. odieux Messieurs soyez attentif

autorité f.

jalousie f.

That city is very populous.
Cette ville f. très-peuplé

The soul is immortal. (The) ancient history is very interesting. ancien histoire f.

âme f.

A new coat. neuf habit





Those boys are docile and

The grass is thick.
L'herbe f. épais


My friends, be faithful and discreet.


soyez fidèle

be polite. (The) tigers are cruel.
soyez poli
tigres m. sont

A large square room.
grand carré chambre f.

hand. A mild temper. main f.

doux humeur f.



Young ladies,

A pretty little round box. joli petit rond boîte f. A protecting

A foolish undertaking.
entreprise f.



The new

nouveau mode f.

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The paint is peinture f.

An interesting intéressant

remarquable événements m. pl.

of the Ro


A plain, simple, and natural style. An ingenuous naturel -m. ingénu


candour, an amiable simplicity, and a lively artlessness are the

deur f.


charme m.

aimable simplicité f.

of (the) youth.

jeunesse f.

piquant naïveté f. sont

67. Formation of the Degrees of Comparison.

There are three degrees of comparison : 1. The Positive, or the adjective itself. 2. The Comparative, expressed by plus, more, or moins, less,

3. The Superlative, expressed by le, la,
or les plus, the most,

or le, la, les moins,
the least,

placed be

fore the adjective.

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Le plus sage, wisest. Le moins instruit, the least learned.

le, la, or les is not used

NOTE. In the superlative degree the article when a possessive pronoun precedes the noun, as mon plus cher ami, my dearest friend.

NOTE. The French have no terminations similar to the er and est used to express the English comparative and superlative.

68. The following are irregular :

Le meilleur, the best.

Pire (or plus mauvais), Le pire (or le plus mau.

Bon, good;
Mauvais, bad;

Meilleur, better;

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vais), the worst.

Le moindre (or le plus petit), the least or the smallest.

69. The comparative of these adjectives must not be mistaken for the comparative of the following adverbs :

Bien, well; Mieux, better;

Le mieux, the best.

Mal, badly; Pis*, or plus mal, worse; Le pis, or le plus mal, the

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Londres est la plus belle des villes. Le meilleur ami. La plus belle comparaison. Mes plus jolies fleurs. Son meilleur

* Pis is also used as a comparative adjective, C'est bien pis, it is much worse. Il n'y a rien de pis que cela, there is nothing worse than that.

ouvrage. La plus jeune de mes sœurs.

mes frères.

Un meilleur raisonnement.


Le moins sage de Il raisonne mieux.

Rich, richer, richest. A pretty village, a prettier village, the




prettiest village. Amiable, less amiable, the least amiable. Small,


smaller, smallest. A good drawing, a better drawing. He draws dessin m. Il dessine

well his brother draws better.




70. In a comparison of superiority, plus, more, is placed before the adjective, and que, than, after it.

more than

Il est plus savant que moi.
He is more learned than I.


71. In a comparison of inferiority, moins, less, is placed before the adjective, and que, than, after it.




Il est moins riche que vous.
He is less rich than you.


72. In a comparison of equality, aussi, as, in affirmative, or si, so, in negative, phrases, is placed before the adjective, and que, as, after it.

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La tulipe est aussi belle que la rose.
The tulip is as beautiful as the rose.
La tulipe n'est pas si belle que la rose.
The tulip is not so beautiful as the rose.

NOTE. Aussi is also used occasionally in negative sentences.

Read, translate, and parse:

Homère me paraît plus sublime que tous les autres poëtes

épiques. La rose est plus belle que la violette. L'automne est moins varié que le printemps. Vous êtes moins instruit que votre frère. Il est aussi savant que moi. Il n'est pas si âgé que votre sœur.


Nothing is more agreeable to the mind than the light of (the) Rien n'est agréable


lumière f.

truth. William is less attentive than his brother. He is as rich vérité f. Guillaume


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(The) shipwreck and (the) naufrage m.

death are less fatal than the pleasures which attack (the) virtue. plaisirs qui attaquent

mort f. sont funeste

vertu f. My dear friend, be as good and as benevolent as your father. Mon bienveillant votre



Numeral adjectives indicate a reference to numbers. They are of two sorts, the cardinal and the ordinal.

The cardinal are the numbers which indicate quantity without marking the order, and the ordinal are the numbers which serve to indicate the order in which things may be arranged.

From the cardinal and ordinal numbers are derived other numeral expressions, understood by their denominations of collective, fractional and proportional

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