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I have a question about a sentence with the comparative form of an adjective.

When you say "Between A and B, A is better, larger, taller, etc.", should there be an article before the adjective?

Between the Willis Tower and the Empire State Building, the Willis Tower is the taller.

Between the Willis Tower and the Empire State Building, the Willis Tower is taller.

Which of the two sentences above can you use?

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When comparing two or more things using than, you use a comparative, for example better or more dangerous:

The Burj Khalifa is taller than any other building. -many things,
The Willis Tower is taller than the Empire State Building. -two things

When comparing more than two things and you don't use than, you use the definite article followed by the superlative, for example best or most dangerous.

The Burj Khalifa is the tallest building.

When comparing just two things and you don't use the word than, you use the definite article followed by the comparative, for example better or more dangerous.

Between the Willis Tower and the Empire State Building, the Willis Tower is the taller.

In informal English, it is not unusual to omit the definite article in sentences without than.

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  • Do you think, "... the Willis Tower is taller." is incorrect?
    – gotube
    Oct 5 at 19:26
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    @gotube I wouldn't say that it's incorrect... just inappropriate in a formal/written context. Actual usage largely defines what is correct.
    – JavaLatte
    Oct 6 at 10:50
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Your sentence is correct in grammar and meaning both with and without "the", but the structure is different.

In both cases, there are some missing words that are understood by the listener:

"... the Willis Tower is taller (than the Empire State Building)."

"... the Willis Tower is the taller (one of these two buildings)."

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