Prerequisite:Mr.Smith has 30 books and Ms.Smith has 31 books.

Which is correct?
A. Ms.Smith has one more book than Mr.Smith.
B. Ms.Smith has one more books than Mr.Smith.

  • one more book, two more books. One cannot never be plural....
    – Lambie
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 18:36

4 Answers 4


"One more book".

Book is singular, we are describing the number of additional books. The number of additional books is "one", so it is "one more book".

  • Thank you.  Ms. Smith has multiple books (31 books), yet "book" is singular in "one more book than Mr, Smith (30 books)" ?
    – Ran
    Commented Dec 19, 2022 at 0:19
  • Yes. How many other books Ms Smith has is grammatically irrelevant. The number of books is one, not thirty-one.
    – James K
    Commented Dec 19, 2022 at 8:17
  • OK. " XX more books" doesn't refer to all the books Ms. Smith has, but refers to the additional books. In this situation, the additional books is one book(31 - 30 = 1)   I understood in this way. –
    – Ran
    Commented Dec 19, 2022 at 8:54

"One more book" is correct (because of "one"; compare "two more books"). This is tricky because Ms. Smith has multiple books in total. It is a construction where the rules of grammar don't correspond directly to the meaning: "one more X than..." superficially focuses on the one additional X, but the sentence is actually communicating something about multiple Xes.


No, it doesn't work that way. This isn’t close to an adverb. Your set of possible word classes appears to be too small to do a good job describing the parts of a noun phrase.

More is here a quantifier, a kind of determiner, just like when you have to walk three more miles. To be an an adverb, it would have to be something like learning more about this or that. Here it's participating in a than comparative structure, just like when you have more things to do today than you had yesterday. This are complex constructions.

And one is here a cardinal number, here used as a particular sort of determiner. It can never be an adverb. Its noun should here agree with it in number, just one in one man, two men, three men. In attributive situations involving units, however, only the singular is normally used, as in a three-man fire engine or two different seven-foot men or a one-horse open sleigh.

You can have a thirty-book library because in your library there are thirty books. The next person can have forty-book library because he has ten books more than you have. If he had only one more book than you, his library would number thirty-one books, giving him a thirty-one–book library, more likely written out as a 31-book library.

Please visit our sister site for English Language Learners, where you can learn more about how things like noun phrases, parts of speech, comparison phrases, measure phrases, and grammatical number work in English from people who specialize in teaching beginners.

Baa, baa, black sheep,
Have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir,
Three bags full.
One for the master,
One for the dame,
And one for the little boy
Who lives down the lane.

  • 1
    The original asked about adverbs. See here.
    – tchrist
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 16:25
  • Hmm, is revision history lost on migration? That seems a mis-feature.
    – James K
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 16:31
  • Thank you. the "many" in "I have many more books than John" is not an adverb either? My dictionary (written by an English teacher from Japanese) says that "many" in "many more books" can be considered an adverb.
    – Ran
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 16:31
  • @Ran Yes, under some analyses, more is considered an "adverb" in things like many more books, in the same way that much may be so considered in things like much more light. However, "adverb" is not as useful as calling these types of quantifying phrases, as in I have a few more high-school French friends this year than last. It does no good calling few an adverb here, for one thing because doing so would be too suggestive of properties that in no way apply to it. These are specialized modifiers of other words. You could not swap out few or more or much for most adverbs.
    – tchrist
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 16:37
  • Thank you so much. "many" in "many more books" and "much" in "much more light" can be considered an adverb. But, "one" in "one more book" and "a few" in "a few more fiends" isn't an adverb but a quantifying phrase.  I understood it this way.
    – Ran
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 16:49

Comparative quantifier :

I have one more book than you. I have more coffee than you. I have two more books than you. I have two more bags of coffee than you.

More is the comparative form of much and many

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