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I was walking to school (England) with my eight-year-old talking about stuff she'd been doing the day before. At some point she said that something had been "...funner..." than something else.

I did not immediately realise that 'fun' is, historically at least, a noun and NOT an adjective. So I was wondering in my head why 'fun' (as an adjective) sounded wrong when made into the standard comparative for a single syllable adjective (i.e. 'funner').

I have since looked 'fun' up and realise that 'officially' 'fun' is not an adjective (see OED, and https://grammarianism.wordpress.com/2015/06/05/can-fun-be-an-adjective/).

I'm wondering whether adjectival usage is increasing. Whether it is regional (I'm guessing it's an American import); And whether, adjectivally, it is commoner to say funner and funnest, or more fun and most fun. The latter sound better to me, presumably because they are usages that are found when fun is used as a noun.

  • I hear kids use it a lot--"How did you like the concert? It was a fun time." I'm only in my late 20s though, so I can't say how long this usage has been around. – AffableAmbler Jun 20 '17 at 16:32
  • Similar: fun - part of speech – sumelic Jun 20 '17 at 16:38
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    I think fun as an adjective is quite common. Merriam-Webster has a definition for this. It does state that "funner" and "funnest" are sometimes used but I, too, prefer "more fun" and "most fun". What adjective would you use if you wanted to eschew using "fun"? Any I can think of have slightly different meaning, e.g. "entertaining". – Jim MacKenzie Jun 20 '17 at 16:41
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    This has been addressed at Is "funnest" a word? – Edwin Ashworth Jun 20 '17 at 22:29
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    I read it as a short form of saying "facts that are fun [to know and tell]"—that is, "facts that yield enjoyment in the learning and possessing [of]." But it is difficult for me to see fun in the phrase "fun fact" as anything but a modifier—and in fact, an adjective. – Sven Yargs Jun 20 '17 at 23:10
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Nowadays it's common to use "fun" as an adjective.

Fun is used for talking about something that is enjoyable or someone that you enjoy being with.

1) Barcelona is a fun city. 2) Our day at the beach was really fun.

The examples are collected from Macmillan dictionary. And by saying " more /most fun ", you will be in the safe side.

http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/who-says-fun-cant-be-an-adjective : This article is worth a read.

  • That's my experience too (England). Using more and most for comparative and superlative forms of single syllable adjectives is rare but not unknown. This is probably why children coin funner and funnest but they're probably too similar to funnier and funniest to become accepted. – Chris H Jun 20 '17 at 19:00
  • Very interesting link, thanks. Would YOU say "Barcelona is the funnest city I've been to" (if that were the case ;-) )? If not, how would you say this? – Dan Jun 20 '17 at 23:17
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No, definitely not! I might say it is the 'most fun city', but it is not really my (British)style. I would be more likely to say "I had more fun in Barcelona than in any other city" I can spare the extra time and ink for a more 'elegant' sentence!

  • Please add a source to support your answer. – JJJ Mar 25 at 16:27

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