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Upper Intermediate Spanish Lesson 34: Absolute use of Spanish Superlatives

This lesson is part of the Upper-Intermediate Spanish Course
(74 Spanish video or mp3 lessons. 4 hrs 3 mins)


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In this free Spanish video lesson we will look at the absolute use of Superlatives in Spanish (Superlativos) and analyse Spanish adverbs such as Muy (very) and Tan (so), Spanish suffixes such as -ísimo and -ísima (extremely), and Spanish prefixes such as Re- and Requete- (very). This continues the theme from the previous Spanish lesson where we analysed the relative use of Superlatives in Spanish – más / menos + adjective + de… and mejores / peores + noun + de… A “Superlative” is the form of an adjective or adverb that indicates that the person, thing, or action referred to has the quality of the adjective or adverb to a degree greater than that of anything it is being compared to. There are two types of Superlative: relative and absolute. The Relative Superlative describes a noun within the context of a larger group and the Absolute Superlative does not. English Relative Superlatives are formed using the word “Most” or the suffix “-est”, for example: “The Mona Lisa is the most famous painting in the world”. In Spanish we would say: “La Mona Lisa es el cuadro más famoso del mundo”, using “Más” for “Most”. An example of an Absolute Superlative in English is: “Tom is very/so handsome”, where Tom is not compared to anyone else in a larger group. In Spanish this sentence would read: “Tom es muy/tan guapo”. Spanish Superlativos, as you can see, are not overly complicated to form and use. You just have to learn and remember a few key rules and a long list of Spanish adjectives.

Lesson notes:

Spanish Adverbs:

Muy …: Very
-mente: -ly
Tan…: So

Spanish Expressions: (coloquial)

La mar de…: Very
La mar de bien: Very well
Una pasada de…: Very
Una pasada de alto: Very tall

Spanish Suffixes:

Ísimo/a/os/as: Very very/Extremely
Buenísimo: Extremely good
Exceptions (in these cases you use muy, sumamente, extremadamente):
Colours finishing in –a: rosa, malva, púrpura.
Adjectives finishing in –uo and íl: arduo, juvenil
Adjectives with the stress on the third before last syllable finishing in –eo, -ico. –fero, -imo: espontáneo, único, politico, mortífero, íntimo

Spanish Prefixes: (coloquial)

Re-: Very
Requete-: Very
Super-: Very

Activity:

Make Spanish Superlative sentences using the following information…

Esta película/super
El libro/tan
Mi hermano/la mar de
Sonia/ísimo/a/os/as

Here are the possible answers to the last activity:

El Rolls Royce es el coche más caro del mundo
La Sorbona es la universidad más antigua del mundo
Los Beatles son el grupo musical más famoso del mundo

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