Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Season 3 – Episode 34 – Grammar – Making Contrasts

Welcome back, everyone! Time to do some more contrasts! For those of you who didn’t tune into my IELTS writing a few weeks ago, I’m going over it again in general English form. 

Less and fewer are comparatives.  They are the opposite of more.  Use fewer with count nouns and less with non count nouns. 

Least and fewest are superlatives.  They are the opposite of most. 

To emphasize a comparison or contrast, you can use the words with far, a lot, or much. 

Form

Comparatives

Less + noncount noun

Fewer + count noun

Superlatives

The fewest + count noun

The least + noncount noun

Example

There is less production in Japan than in Germany. 

There are fewer electric cars than gasoline-powered cars.

_

I wonder which company has the fewest electric cars in production. 

Hybrid cars use the least gasoline.

Emphasis

A lot/much/far + fewer + count noun

A lot/much/far + less + noncount nouns 

_

_

  • There are far fewer cars sold in winter. 
  • A lot less money is spent on motorcycles than in the past. 

Complete the sentences with less, fewer, least, or fewest. 

  1. You will find ________________ automobile manufacturers in Honduras than in Costa Rica. 
  2. South Korea produces _____________ vehicles in Japan. 
  3. Togo is the country with the _____________ motor vehicles per capita. 
  4. Right now, Iran produces _____________ cars than China. 
  5. I think the boat industry makes _______________ than the car industry. 
  6. In my country, _________________ people use public transportation than drive cars.
  7. The _________________ popular form of transportation in my country is the train. 

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