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Bellissimo – The superlative: Italian grammar lesson 136

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To practice this grammar topic, take Lesson 136 of Ripeti Con Me!

Table of Contents

Superlativo assoluto: Explained

In the previous lessons, we have learned how to compare the qualities of objects and people. Now, we will have a look at the superlativo assoluto, which we use in Italian to indicate that an object or person has the highest degree of a quality, without comparing them to anything else.

Lucia è sempre elegantissima.
Lucia is always very elegant.

Le Isole Eolie sono bellissime.
The Aeolian Islands are very beautiful.

La lingua italiana è conosciutissima!
The Italian language is very well known!)

Superlative Italian 1

Superlativo assoluto: Rules

We form the superlativo assoluto:

  • By simply removing the last letter from the adjective and adding: –ISSIMO/A/I/E.

bello -> bellissimo

conosciuta -> conosciutissima

eleganti -> elegantissimia

alte -> altissime

  • By using the adjective preceded by an adverb such as: molto (very), davvero (really), decisamente (definitely), estremamente (extremely), etc.

Il russo è una lingua davvero difficile.
Russian is a really difficult language.

Siamo state estremamente fortunate a trovare questa offerta (We were extremely lucky to find his offer.)

  • By adding a prefix to the adjective, without a space, such as: super-, arci-, ultra-, stra-, iper-, etc.

This structure is used in informal and spoken language.

Quel film è strabello!
That movie is super good!

Sono arcistufa dei suoi rimproveri.
I am so fed up with his reprimands.

buonissimo Italian

Superlativo assoluto: Irregular forms

As for the superlativo relativo, some adjectives have two forms of the superlativo assoluto: have a look at the table below.


Queste lasagne sono ottime. (This lasagna is excellent.)

In questo bar il caffè è pessimo. (Coffee is really bad in this café.)

Superlativo assoluto Italian

Superlativo assoluto: Exceptions

Sometimes, you can’t use the comparative or superlative forms of adjectives. This happens with adjectives that do not allow a grade or level of intensity, such as:

  • Geographical or ethnical adjectives (italiano, francese, africano, etc.)
  • Adjectives that have been altered by suffixes such as –etto, –occio, –ino, -ello. (bellino, belloccio, piccoletto, piccino, etc.)
  • Adjectives that already indicate an extreme quality: straordinario (extraordinary), magnifico (wonderful), terribile (terrible), etc.




To practice this grammar topic, take Lesson 136 of Ripeti Con Me!

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