Is it grammatically correct to say "most wild thing I have ever done"?

I know it doesn't sound appropriate but is it grammatically correct?

closed as off-topic by JonMark Perry, tchrist Jul 27 '18 at 13:13

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Why do you think it might not be grammatically correct? – Oliver Mason Jul 27 '18 at 8:11
  • Yes, the statement is entirely, 100 percent, correct. Please tell us why you think it doesn't sound appropriate. – VTH Jul 27 '18 at 8:30
  • @OliverMason Obviously because the superlative is "wildest" not *"most wild". – Kris Jul 27 '18 at 9:00
  • @vth Obviously because the superlative is "wildest" not *"most wild". – Kris Jul 27 '18 at 9:00
  • 1
    Could have sworn that the question said wildest instead of the most wild. Hmm. Nevertheless, although the most wild thing doesn't sound very natural, it is grammatically correct. In fact, it is regularly used by National Geographic - example: nationalgeographic.com/travel/photography/… – VTH Jul 27 '18 at 9:14

This perhaps sounds inappropriate to you because the most commonly used superlative form of wild is wildest: ‘It was the wildest thing I have ever done.’

This is because to form a superlative from one syllable adjectives you generally add the suffix -est.

You would also add -est to two syllable words that end in 'y' or 'ly': happy becomes happiest and early becomes earliest.

But for many two syllables adjectives the superlative is formed by putting most first: most famous.

The superlative of adjectives with three or more syllables is also formed by putting most first.

It is worth noting there are also some irregular superlatives such as bad becoming worst.

  • 1
    Please note that the search will not be very accurate. Most wild google searches produce false positives, as do most wild goose chases. That is because they disregard the context in which the phrase is used. – Oliver Mason Jul 27 '18 at 10:25
  • 1
    You're right. I will edit my post to remove that citation. 'Most' could also appear next to 'wild' as a determiner rather than an adverb: e.g. 'Most wild game animals are lean.' – motrots Jul 27 '18 at 11:24
  • Even the unfriendliest of alleged rules has counterexamples that put the lie to it. – tchrist Jul 27 '18 at 13:11
  • I was trying to suggest that these are patterns of usage rather than definitive rules. – motrots Jul 27 '18 at 13:27

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