Learn English – “Poorer” vs. “more poor”


As a non-native speaker I am curious about the everyday usage of more poor in contrast to poorer. The dictionary dictates poorer as the correct form, with some allowing both forms.

According to Google Ngram Viewer poorer is more common in books by an immense factor of 100.

Is more poor a colloquialism? If so, are there cultural differences? Or is it simply due to some people's lack of effort? Are there situations where you would favor more poor?

Particularly this uncontested response on answers.com got me pondering.

Best Answer

Have a look at the BNC/the British National Corpus. For "poorer" BNC has 879 examples. For "more poor" only 8, and they are of the type "There are more poor people in + place".

"more poor" as a comparative form clearly does not conform to standard English. The rule is adjectives with one syllable have the endings -er/est.