How to make comparisons: Italian grammar lesson 133

Key Takeaways

Unlock the secrets of Italian comparisons with our guide! Learn to express “more than” and “less than” with ease, and master the nuances of più di and meno di to compare everything from nouns to adverbs. 🇮🇹✨

  • Comparative Basics: Use più for “more” and meno for “less” when comparing two things. Remember, it’s all about the adjective sandwiched between these words and the thing you’re comparing. 🥪
  • Noun Comparisons: When the second part of your comparison is a noun, like comparing Giulio to Greta, stick with di after your adjective. It’s like saying “less pleasant than” in Italian style. 🧍‍♂️🧍‍♀️
  • Pronoun Showdown: Even when you’re comparing to a pronoun, più di and meno di are your go-to phrases. It’s the Italian way to say “we are older than you” without breaking a sweat. 👥
  • Adverb Comparisons: Got an adverb in your comparison? No problemo! Use più di to say the weather is “better than before” and sound like a local. ☀️➡️🌧️
  • Preposizione Articolata: When an article enters the ring, di bulks up into a preposizione articolata. Match it with the noun’s number and gender to say “younger than Ms. Anna” like a pro. 💪
  • Verb Comparisons: If you’re comparing actions without a specific term, just add di before più. It’s the secret ingredient to say “costs more” and win the Italian grammar game. 🏆

Quick facts

How do you form a comparative with "più" in Italian?

Use "più + adjective + di" when comparing with a noun, pronoun, or adverb.

When do you use "più + adjective + di"?

When the second part of the comparison is a noun, pronoun, or adverb.

What happens if the second part of the comparison starts with an article?

The article joins with "di" to form a preposizione articolata like "del" or "della."

Can you give an example of using "più" with an article?

"Mia madre è più giovane della signora Anna" means "My mother is younger than Ms. Anna."

How do you compare using a verb without the term of comparison?

Add "di" in front of "più" if the term of comparison is not expressed.

What’s an example of using "di più" with a verb?

"Ad un'asta, vince chi offre di più" means "At an auction, who bids more wins."

How do you use "meno" in comparisons?

Similar to "più," use "meno + adjective + di" for less comparisons, like "meno simpatico di Greta."

Can "più di" and "meno di" be used with all verb tenses?

Yes, they can be used in questions, positive and negative sentences, and all verb tenses.

How does the comparative form change with plural nouns?

The preposizione articolata adjusts to match the number and gender, e.g., "dei tuoi" for plural.

What’s a practical usage of "più di" in everyday Italian?

"Per saperne di più, clicca qui" translates to "To learn more, click here."

My Thoughts

What is il comparativo in Italian?

In Italian, we form the comparative using the words più (more) and meno (less).

Luca è più vecchio di Mario.

Luca is older than Mario.

Il mio cane è meno intelligente del tuo.

My dog is less intelligent than yours.

In this lesson, we are going to look at one of the possible ways of forming the comparative in Italian:

  • Più+ adjective + di+ second part of the comparison

La tua macchina è più veloce della mia.

When to use più di and meno di?

We use più + adjective + di when:

The second part of the comparison is a noun.

Giulio è meno simpatico di Greta.

Giulio is less pleasant than Greta.

The second part of the comparison is a pronoun.

Noi siamo più vecchi di te.

We are older than you.

The second part of the comparison is an adverb.

Adesso il tempo è più bello di prima.

Now the weather is better than before.

Marco è più bravo di tutti gli altri studenti.

How to use più di and meno di?

Be careful: when the second part of the comparison starts with an article, the article joins onto di, which becomes a preposizione articolata (del, della, dello, dell’, dei, degli, delle).

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This preposition will match the number and gender of the noun or pronoun it precedes. Have a look at the sentences below:

Mia madre è più giovane della signora Anna.

My mother is younger than Ms. Anna.

I miei occhiali sono più costosi dei tuoi.

My glasses are more expensive than yours.

I lupi sono meno pericolosi degli orsi?

Are wolves less dangerous than bears?

Lei cucina meglio di me.

How to use di più with verbs alone?

If the comparison involves a verb and the term of comparison is not expressed in the sentence, you add di in front of più.


Per saperne di più, clicca qui.

To learn more, click here.

Quel modello costa di più perché è nuovo.

That model costs more because it’s new.

Ad un asta, vince chi offre di più.

At an action, who bids more wins.

Practice with Quizlet

Here's a set of flashcards and quizzes to practice this grammar topic.

Il comparativo: examples

Well done! Now you know how and when to use the structure più + adjective + di correctly. Let’s have a look at some more examples of this form of comparative; note that you can use it with questions, positive and negative sentences, and with all verb tenses!

Secondo te, i girasoli sono più belli delle rose?

What do you think? Are sunflowers more beautiful than roses?

Pensavo che Paolo fosse meno alto di Marco, ma mi sbagliavo.

I thought Paolo was shorter than Marco, but I was wrong!

Non sei più forte di me!

You’re not stronger than me!

Test your knowledge in 10 quick questions


How to do comparisons in Italian?

In Italian, the comparative form is expressed by using the words "più" (more) or "meno" (less) when comparing two entities. This comparison can be made between people, places, objects, or even abstract nouns. The comparative form is used to express the degree of a quality or aspect that one entity possesses in relation to another. For example, "Maria è più alta di Luca" (Maria is taller than Luca) or "Il clima di Roma è meno freddo di quello di Berlino" (The climate of Rome is less cold than that of Berlin).

How do you use "di" in Italian?

The word "di" in Italian has various uses that are important to understand. 1: It can denote ownership, similar to the English possessive form. 2: It can be used to indicate someone's or something's origins. 3: It can express the topic of something. 4: It can indicate what something is made of. 5: "Di" is used to make comparisons. 6: It can be used to specify quantities. 7: "Di" is used to talk about a specific time of the day or year.

Italian word of the day
Non capivo più niente dal sonno.
I was so tired that I couldn’t think.
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6 Responses

  1. “Ad un asta, vince chi offre di più.
    At an action, who bids more wins.”

    Nella frase inglese, dovrebbe esserci auction invece di action, vero?

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