French Language

Discuss and learn French: French vocabulary, French grammar, French culture etc.

French Vocab Games app for iPhone/iPad French-English dictionary French grammar French vocab/phrases

For the latest updates, follow @FrenchUpdates on Twitter!

From my understing, bien is used when comparing adverbs while bon used when comparing adjective.

We are learning le comparatif et superlatif of bien/bon at class, but i am confused of their usage.


I made some sentence with comparatif/superlatif but some of them are corrected as below. I can't figure out why?

Any can explain and advise if these sentences are correct?


Kyoto est  la meilleure ville de Japon.

La ville de Osaka est bonne.

La ville de Nagoya est aussi bonne que Osaka. corrected as-La ville de Nagoya est aussi bien que Osaka.

La ville de Tokyo est meilleur que Osaka. corrected as-La ville de Tokyo est mieux que Osaka.

La ville de kobe est moins bonne.



Views: 755

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion


You question is kind of tricky, I think, because, you won't really same that a city is "bonne" or "bien. Especially "bonne".

You can hear "La ville d'Osaka est bien" or "la ville de Kobe est moins bien" but it is quite familiar. In more formal french, you won't use it.


Nevertheless, you will rather say "la ville de nagoya est aussi bien que osaka" and "la ville de tokyo est mieux que osaka"

I don't have examples to illustrate the difference between "bien" and "bon".....

It's true that bien can be an adverb, meaning "well", "properly" etc.


However, bien can also be an adjective, meaning something similar to bon. The difference is that bien tends to mean "good" from a more subjective point of view, meaning things like "comfortable", "well made", "pleasant", "good-looking" etc, whereas bon tends to mean "good", "good-quality", "correct" from a slightly more objective/measurable point of view.


So in your example, if you describe a city as "bien", you're making some kind of value judgement about e.g. how pleasant it is to live/visit there, whereas "bonne" would (if used at all-- I suspect lauris is right that it wouldn0't be so common) imply more "concrete" or "measurable" things such as how well its economy was doing.


Follow BitterCoffey on Twitter

© 2022   Created by Neil Coffey.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service