Visitors :


Please place a pin on
the guestmap to show
where you come from.


Free Guestmap from Bravenet.com

Many thanks for all your encouraging messages.

Guestmap information
Follow us on Facebook
facebook-icon

Custom Search




English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.


FEW - L ITTLE

(few - fewer - fewest / little - less - least)




Few and little are both quantifiers.
Few means  'not many'. →  Few questions were asked at the meeting.
Little means 'not much'. → Little attention was paid to comfort.

The comparative forms are :
Fewer (than) : → Fewer than 50 brochures were distributed.
Less (than) :   → Less money was spent on advertising than last year.

The superlative forms are :
The fewest : →  In December we received the fewest number of enquiries ever.
The least :   →  This car is the least expensive of all the models on show.

Few-fewer-fewest are used with countable nouns (1 melon, 2 melons ...).

Few readers noticed the advertisement.
♦ There are fewer customers in the shops today than yesterday.
♦ Maria made the fewest mistakes in the English test.

Little-less-least are used with uncountable nouns (milk, cheese, money, homework...).

Little attention was paid to the warning sign.
♦ Alex earns less money than Julia.
♦ The youngest pupils were given the least homework.


  Meaning Example
     
Few Not many/not a lot There are few melons in the shop today.
We don't have much choice.
Fewer Not as many. The supermarket has fewer melons than the
greengrocer .
     
Fewest The smallest number The shop has the fewest melons today.
     
Little Not much/not a lot There is little milk left in the jug.
Is there enough for breakfast?
     
Less Not as much We bought less milk yesterday than today.
Least The smallest quantity. The eldest child drinks the least milk.
   

A few and a little have a positive meaning.
  • A few = a small number
    ♦ There are a few melons = There is a small number of melons.

  • A little = a small quantity.
    ♦ There is a little milk = There is a small quantity of milk.




See also:  countable and plural nouns



back to list