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Sentence: "I found this book the most interesting".

According to my textbook, "the" is incorrect here and it should be only: "I found this book most interesting".

This sounds very strange to me, as with superlative degree we always use "the".

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Most interesting is another way of saying very interesting.

The most interesting implies comparison with other similar things, for instance ...of the books I have read this year, or ...of the movies I have ever seen.

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  • Does this rule only works for "interesting"? Next time when I attempt any question like this in spotting errors:- ...... ____ [superlative degree]. How can I know that "the" is required here or not like maybe some rule of thumb etc.? – Navdeep Singh Jan 24 at 14:01
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    When comparing one thing with some/all others, it's always the most [adjective] (one) or the largest, smallest etc. This has nothing to do with the fact that most can also mean very . – Kate Bunting Jan 24 at 14:49
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If the sentence stands alone without any context then you are correct, the the is not needed. If, however, there is a section which has been omitted then the would be correct. For example

Of the whole library about quantum mechanics I found this book the most interesting.

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  • Then what about this one: "This is the most fascinating movie I've ever watched" I'm not specifying any context (sci-fi/horror/action thriller etc.) but still using "the" – Navdeep Singh Jan 24 at 12:32
  • And we often use many superlative degree sentences in which we do not specify any context, but still use "the" – Navdeep Singh Jan 24 at 12:58

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