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The happier Options
Joe Kim
Posted: Wednesday, June 17, 2020 11:32:55 PM

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Joined: 9/16/2016
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The more cookies you have the happier you are.

Here why "the" is used or necessary for happier (I have a problem with more too, but to make this easier to understand, I will leave this out for now, unless they have the same answer)?
Clyde of Oz
Posted: Wednesday, June 17, 2020 11:59:49 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 12/22/2014
Posts: 253
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Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Joe Kim wrote:
The more cookies you have the happier you are.

Here why "the" is used or necessary for happier (I have a problem with more too, but to make this easier to understand, I will leave this out for now, unless they have the same answer)?


This is a very common idiom. The word "the" is necessary. I made up a few examples:

The longer you wait the more impatient you become.
The higher you climb the farther you can fall.
The sooner you start, the sooner you'll finish.

georgew
Posted: Thursday, June 18, 2020 1:24:02 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 8/13/2016
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Location: Calabasas, California, United States
Joe Kim wrote:
The more cookies you have the happier you are.

Here why "the" is used or necessary for happier (I have a problem with more too, but to make this easier to understand, I will leave this out for now, unless they have the same answer)?


Correction again Joe. Here, why is "the" used ...

sureshot
Posted: Thursday, June 18, 2020 3:19:19 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/16/2015
Posts: 2,741
Neurons: 451,494
Joe Kim wrote:
The more cookies you have the happier you are.

Here why "the" is used or necessary for happier (I have a problem with more too, but to make this easier to understand, I will leave this out for now, unless they have the same answer)?

________________________________

In English language, we can use double comparatives in the pattern "the + comparative expression + subject + verb .. ., the + comparative expression + subject + verb" to say that things change or vary together, or that the variable quantities are systematically related. Double comparatives are often employed to underline the importance of doing or not doing a certain activity.

"More/less" can be used with a noun in this structure. In this case, the pattern is "the + more/less + noun + subject + verb, the + comparative expression + subject + verb". This is the pattern in your sentence.

We use "the" before a comparative degree when we want to depict a parallel comparison. The definite article "the" is used here to indicate that something will definitely happen at some stage in the future even if you do not know exactly when.

It is useful to know that the double comparative pattern has other minor variations too.


Wilmar (USA) 1M
Posted: Thursday, June 18, 2020 7:30:01 AM

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Joined: 6/4/2015
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Location: Vinton, Iowa, United States
Plus, the resulting parallel form is part of what makes this "idiom" work. Also, a comma should separate the 2 phrases.
The more cookies you have, the happier you are.
sureshot
Posted: Thursday, June 18, 2020 7:37:05 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/16/2015
Posts: 2,741
Neurons: 451,494
Wilmar (USA) 1M wrote:
Plus, the resulting parallel form is part of what makes this "idiom" work. Also, a comma should separate the 2 phrases.
The more cookies you have, the happier you are.

___________________

Thanks for highlighting the use of a comma. The patterns in my earlier post have a comma in the two patterns in blue. However, it was not highlighted as the focus was on the specific doubts raised in the original post.
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