The Adjective (O Adjectivo)
Plural of the Adjectives (Plural dos Adjectivos)
(General Rule)
Plural Examples
vowel and diphthong + -s triste sad : tristes
mau bad : maus
consonant + -es feliz happy : felizes
elementar elementary : elementares
Termination (Particularities) Plural Examples
-ão changes to -ãos, -ães or -ões são able-bodied : sãos
glutão glutton : glutões
-m changes to -ns jovem young: jovens
bom good : bons
-al, -ol, -ul changes to -is azul blue : azuis
oval oval : ovais
-el changes to -eis moscatel sort of grape : moscatéis
-il stressed changes the  l into s febril feverish : febris
-il unstressed changes to -eis futil futile : fúteis
-ás, -ês, -is + -es português : portugueses
-s, -x remains unchanged simples simple : simples
compound adjectives  only the 2nd element makes plural luso-americana : luso-americanas
Uniform Adjectives (Adjectivos uniformes)
The uniform adjectives have only one form for masculine and feminine. Except for the adjectives ended by -a, the majority of the other uniform adjectives was inherited in Portuguese from the Latin adjectives of the third declension.
Termination Feminine Examples
-a unchanged agrícola agricultural
celta Celtic
homicida homicide
indígena indigenous
-e unchanged árabe Arabic
breve brief
doce sweet
-ense, -ante, -ente, inte unchanged ateniense Athenian
coerente coherent
contribuinte tax-paying
hilariante hilarious
-l unchanged


espanhol Spanish : espanhola
amável amable
artificial artificial
azul blue
frágil fragile
-s (of the paroxitone adjectives) unchanged reles insignificant
simples simple
-ar and -or (in comparative degree) unchanged ímpar impair
inferior inferior
pior worse
vulgar vulgar
-z, -m unchanged


andaluz andalusian : andaluza
bom good : boa
audaz bold
feliz happy
selvagem savage
virgem virgin
Degree of the Adjectives (Grau dos Adjectivos)
Degree Formation Examples
of Superiority
mais + ADJ + que or do que És mais alto que o João.
He is taller than João.
of Equality
tão + ADJ + como Ela é tão ágil como a mãe.
She is as quick as her mother.
of Inferiority
menos + ADJ. + que or do que Sou menos hábil que tu.
I am less skilful than you.
Absolute Synthectic
as in Latin, with the suffixes:
  • -íssimo  
  • -imo  
  • -rimo 
See the Latin Superlative Degree.
belo beautiful : belíssimo
feliz happy : felicíssimo
facil easy : facílimo
livre free : libérrimo
Absolute Analytical
with the adverbs before the adjectives:
  • assaz enough 
  • bastante enough 
  • bem very 
  • imensamente largely 
  • muito very 


assaz difícil
bastante largo
bem pobre
imensamente bom
muito fácil

Relative of Superiority
DEF. ART.mais + ADJ. É o mais antigo. 
It is the most ancient.

Foi a mais hábil.
She was the most skilful.

Relative of Inferiority
DEF. ART.menos + ADJ. Foi a menos hábil.
She was the least skilful.
The analytical forms follow the pattern of the Latin Periphrastic Degrees.
Irregular Degrees (Comparativos e Superlativos irregulares)
Adjectivo Comparative 
of Superiority
Absolute Relative
bom good melhor better óptimo best o melhor  the best
mau bad pior worse péssimo worst o pior  the worst
grande big maior bigger máximo biggest o maior  the biggest
pequeno little menor lesser mínimo least o menor  the least
See the Irregular suppletive degrees in Latin.

Next Topic
Previous Topic

Descriptive Portuguese Grammar
Portuguese Language Main Page

Modern Romance Languages Main Page
Orbis Latinus Main Page

This page is part of Orbis Latinus
© Zdravko Batzarov