Tell me please if there is any difference between the following sentences.
I like fried fish the best.
I like fried fish the most.
By the way, what if I omit the definite article, will the meaning change.
- I like fried fish the best.
- I like fried fish the most.
- I like fried fish best.
- I like fried fish most.
All of these are acceptable and natural, although the last would be in informal speech, or with previous clarifying context.
I like fish, meatloaf, and pasta, but I like fried fish most.
All carry much the same meaning. All imply a comparison with some unstated list of alternative choices, possibly all imaginable foods. Context may suggest a more limited list.
The forms without the article are more clearly comparisons to an elided or previously stated set of alternatives.