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Lower degree comparative

The minorative is a periphrastic comparative that is used to express a lower degree, that is, by means of the word minder less, as in:

die minder gegoede deel van ons gemeenskap
the less well-to-do part of our community

The majorative (the ordinary comparative), on the other hand, is used to express a higher degree, either by means of the comparative suffix -(d)er or periphrastically by means of the word meer more, as illustrated in the following examples:

die ryk·er kapitalistiese klas
the rich·CMPR capitalist class
the richer capitalist class
die meer gegoede voorstede
the more well-to-do suburbs

The comparative adjective is normally used to express a higher degree (majorative), mostly in relation to another object, activity or quality, which may be stated explicitly or not.


Frik is slimm·er as Willem.
Frik be.PRS smart·CMPR PTCL.SIMT Willem
Frik is smarter than Willem.
aangesien die aarde vinnig·er as Mars om die son beweeg
since the earth fast·CMPR than Mars around the sun move
since the earth moves faster around the sun than Mars"
Die motors voor hom begin stadig·er en stadig·er ry.
the cars before him begin slowly·CMPR and slowly·CMPR drive
The cars in front of him start driving more and more slowly.

However, it is also possible to express the opposite relation, namely a lower degree (minorative). The minorative is always formed by putting the word minder less in front of the adjective, just as the majorative may by formed by putting the word meer more in front of the adjective, as in this example:

aandele ook vir minder ryk beleggers
shares also for less rich investors

While the majorative can also (and is mostly) formed by suffixing the morpheme -(d)er to the adjective, there is no comparable morphological means of forming a minorative, nor are there irregular minoratives.

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