English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I was reading an English book. This is a snippet of a conversation below:

But please tell us... do you like your job? Are you happier?

I am confused at happier. Why not use happy?

share|improve this question
+1 because i have never seen this pharse. – Sarawut Positwinyu Jul 16 '11 at 2:37
up vote 12 down vote accepted

The person who said this was comparing the present job with the previous job.

He is saying, "Are you happier with this job, than your other job?"

They could also use happy, that is also correct. But it would mean a different thing.

It would just mean "Are you happy with this job", but it wouldn't compare it with his previous job.
I suppose, they said happier, because they want to compare it with his previous job.

share|improve this answer
There's also Bill Withers Hope She'll Be Happier, for which his live performance at the Carnegie Hall 1973 must be one of the greatest performances ever given there by anyone (ducks to avoid avalanche of counterclaims! :) – FumbleFingers Jul 12 '11 at 1:06

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.