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Are the words senior and junior comparatives or superlatives?:

He’s the senior partner. (senior as a superlative?)

Senior pupils have certain privileges. Only one manager is senior to me now. (senior as a comparative?)

She married a man seven years her junior. (junior as a comparative?)

An office junior is someone who has a low rank in an organization or profession. (junior as a comparative?)

Tom junior has to go to class today. (junior as a superlative?)

Are the words “first, second,…, forty fifth,..., etc” considered as comparatives ones?

Old Eladio

Old chemists never die, they only reach the equilibrium.
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Old EladioAre the words senior and junior comparatives or superlatives?:

He’s the senior partner. (senior as a superlative?)

Senior pupils have certain privileges. Only one manager is senior to me now. (senior as a comparative?)

She married a man seven years her junior. (junior as a comparative?)

An office junior is someone who has a low rank in an organization or profession. (junior as a comparative?)

Tom junior has to go to class today. (junior as a superlative?)

Are the words “first, second,…, forty fifth,..., etc” considered as comparatives ones?

Old Eladio

Old chemists never die, they only reach the equilibrium.

Old EladioAre the words senior and junior comparatives or superlatives?:

He’s the senior partner. (senior as a superlative?)

Senior pupils have certain privileges. Only one manager is senior to me now. (senior as a comparative?)

She married a man seven years her junior. (junior as a comparative?)

An office junior is someone who has a low rank in an organization or profession. (junior as a comparative?)

Tom junior has to go to class today. (junior as a superlative?)

Are the words “first, second,…, forty fifth,..., etc” considered as comparatives ones?

Old Eladio

Junior –is a noun, meaning a person in his young age or green or inexperienced.

Senior- is a noun, meaning exactly the opposite.

A senior accountant is someone who’s been in this profession for a while

A senior = an elderly

I never thought of them in “superlative” and "comparative" terms.
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Goodman: "I never thought of them in “superlative” and "comparative" terms"

Thank you, Gooman. Anyway, I think junior and senior could be considered as comparatives or superlatives. Could anyone of our most EF grammatical lovers say something about it?

AND WHAT ABOUT first, second, etc? It is included in my first post. I think the same, they could be considered as superlatives, really?

Old Eladio
O.E.,

By definition of the words, it’s self-evident which is more superlative. But it’s a matter of perception, as long as the user understands the difference and how to use it accordingly in a given context, it’s fine. As I stated, I never thought of them in the context you described.
Hello Eladio

As you know well, "junior" and "senior" come from the comparatives of Latin adjectives for young ("juvenis") and old ("senem"). So they have comparative sense per se, though in the frame of English grammar, they are not classed as comparatives of adjectives.

OED says "senior" can be taken as a quasi superlative when it is applied to the officer or the student who is the highest in seniority among those of his grade. For example, "senior Major Generals" are the people who are highest in seniority among the officers having the title of Major General". Likewise "senior students in a college" means "fourth graders" if a four year system is adopted as the normal course of study.

"Senior" in "She is six years senior to me" or "She is senior to me by six years" might be taken as a kind of comparative. "Junior" in "George Bush Junior" would be also a comparative because they compare two George Bushes. We can say "They are my seniors in office" and this "my senior" is a noun to mean "a person who is senior in seniority to me". But I am not sure whether we can say "He is the senior in our office" to mean "He is the highest in the rank in our office".

Anyway your question is very interesting to me, because it makes me recognize the queerness of the sentence "She is two years his senior". I am wondering how to parse this sentence grammatically. Syntactically "two years" could be taken as an adverbial, but semantically it clearly works as a modifier to "my senior". So should we take "two years" as a kind of pre-determiner?

paco
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Paco: I love your comments. As you surely know I continue being always the same former “Eladio” although now I appear as Old Eladio. In my modest opinion you’re one of the best EF English-Grammar’s lovers. In fact you’re very (take this in a kind-praise way) obsessive with grammar and you take very seriously the EF posts in order to teach us by the best way you can.

By the way, I didn't know that "junior" and "senior" come from the comparatives of Latin adjectives "juvenis" and "senem". Yes, "two years" may acts as a sort of pre-determiner, I believe....!!??

Is “junior" only used for male people? Senior for both?

Old chemists never die, they just reach the equilibrium.
Hello Eladio

Thanks for the reply. Your compliment makes me blush a little.

By the way, we might take "2 years" in "He is 2 years my senior" as a kind of adverbial, because they say also like "He is in every way my superior". Here "in every way" is definitely an adverbial.

paco
Hi guys,

Is “junior" only used for male people? Senior for both? Both words can be used for both genders.

Clive
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