Italian Language/More on Migliore

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Question
Hi,
I read the question and response on Migliore and am now confused. I thought that "better" was "meglio" and "best" was "migliore"; as in Buono, meglio (comparative), migliore (superlative).

In which case "the better way" would be "il modo meglio" and "the best way" would be "il modo migliore". To me substituting "un" for "il", as in Rich's question, would not seem to change "best" into "better". At least not linguistically, but perhaps as a logical deduction.

Can you clarify the use / meaning of migliore with respect to meglio please.

Thanks,
Barry

Answer
Hello,

first of all I have to point out that “meglio” is an adverb, not an adjective, whereas “migliore” is just an adjective.

Secondly, the adverb “meglio” is the comparative of the adverb “bene”, not of the adjective “buono” whose comparative is just “migliore”.

So, we have the adverb “bene”, whose comparative is “meglio” and the superlative is “benissimo “ or sometimes “ottimamente”, as in the following examples:
-”Parla bene l’Inglese ” (He speaks English well)
-"Parla meglio  l’Inglese del Francese"(He speaks English better than French)
-“Parla benissimo l’Inglese “(He speaks English very well).

Also, we have the adjective “buono”, whose comparative is  “migliore”, the absolute superlative is  “ottimo“ or "buonissimo", and the  relative superlative is “il migliore” as  in the following examples:
-”Da questo lato si gode una buona  vista” (you can get a good view from this side)
-“Da questo lato si gode una vista migliore” (you can get a better view from this side)
-“Da questo lato si gode una vista ottima”( you can get a very good /best view from this side”
-“Da questo lato si gode la migliore  vista possibile” ( you can get the best  view from this side).

Note that the relative superlative  is often  composed of a definite article or articulated preposition  and the comparative “migliore”, as in the following sentences:
-“Ha ottenuto il miglior punteggio di tutti” (he got the best score of all)
-“I migliori anni della nostra vita” ( the best years of our lives)
-“Eravamo alloggiati nel miglior albergo della città” (we stayed in the best hotel in town)

In short, it is wrong to write  “buono” (positive adjective), “meglio” (comparative), “migliore” (superlative),since the correct forms are :“buono” (positive adjective), “migliore”(comparative), “ottimo” or “buonissimo” (absolute superlative ), “il migliore/la migliore/ i migliori/ le migliori” (relative superlative).

Also, you must write “bene” (positive adverb), “meglio” (comparative adverb), “benissimo”/”ottimamente”(superlative adverb).

Therefore, "the better way" means  "il /un modo migliore"(not “il modo meglio” which is absolutely wrong because “meglio” is an adverb and thus cannot modify a noun) as a comparative in sentences like e.g.:”C’è un modo migliore di agire” (There is a better way to behave), where “migliore” is a comparative of the adjective  “buono”, since there is an implied comparison between two ways of behaving.

As for  "the best way", it corresponds to  "il modo migliore" as a relative superlative in e.g. “Questo è il modo  migliore per risparmiare tempo” (This  is  the best way to save time), because “il modo migliore” indicates here  the greatest quality degree in relation to others.

To conclude,  substituting "un" for "il", as in Rich's question,  did not aim at changing  "best" into "better" either  linguistically nor  as a logical deduction, but simply at explaining where one must put  “migliore” used as a comparative adjective  in ”C’è un modo migliore di agire” or as a relative superlative in “Il modo migliore  di agire è essere leali”.

So, I  hope to have  clarified  the use/ meaning of the adjective “migliore”  with respect to the adverb “meglio”.

Lastly, I think that the reason why you are confused is that in English both “migliore” -used as a comparative adjective or as a relative superlative when accompanied by the article - and “meglio” - used as a comparative adverb- translate as “better”, without any difference.

Best regards,

Maria

Italian Language

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Maria

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Italian is my mother tongue and I'll be glad to answer any questions concerning Italian Language.

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