Grammar Info
N4 Lesson 2: 13/17

More than, Over

Noun/Verb + より + Adjective
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使用域 一般
In N5, we learned about the use of より that is seen when making comparisons in より~のほうが. However, in this lesson, we will take a look at how this 格助詞(かくじょし) (case-marking particle) can be used by itself. When used alone, this particle expresses that (A) (a noun or verb) is being compared to (B) (a noun or verb that is regularly paired with an adjective). The word that より is directly attached to will always be ‘less than’ the comparison being made. However, the overall expression is used to describe that (B) is ‘more’ (something) than (A).
  • パンダバナナより重(おも)
    Pandas are heavier than bananas.
  • 太陽(たいよう)ロウソクより明(あか)る
    The sun is brighter than a candle.
In many textbooks, より is taught as meaning ‘more’, but the word that より is attached to will actually be the thing that is ‘less’ (something). The word/quote that has attached to it will be the thing that is ‘more’ (adjective). This is particularly confusing when より is not directly attached to a word, something which is common in casual spoken language.
  • これより高(たか)いものになります
    This is the thing that would be more expensive. (Compared to everything else that is here)
In this sentence, because the is attached to これ, これ is the thing that is ‘more expensive’. As より is not actually directly connected to any other word, it therefore means that これ is expensive, compared to ‘other things’. When you see より like this, just pretend that it says ‘other things’ before it.
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Your paintings are better than mine.
Sunday is better than Monday.
Japanese is harder to speak than English.
みんなの日本語 I
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[DBJG] A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar
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Tae Kim's Japanese Grammar Guide
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