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English adjectives are words that describe or clarify a noun to add information and interest to your writing—sounds simple right? Not quite.

Apart from having to learn English adjectives endings and English adjectives order, there’s another confusing matter to deal with. There are many adjectives that we have in English that end in ‘–ed’ or ‘-ing’.

These English adjectives describe feelings, such as ‘confused’ and ‘confusing’. That’s right, some English adjectives end in ‘–ing’; not all words that end in ‘–ing’ are verbs. So what’s the difference between these English adjectives?.

  • English adjectives with –ing are the cause of the feeling/situation
  • English adjectives with –ing are the cause of the feeling/situation• English adjectives with –ed are the feelings of the person/animal affected

Grammar is very confusing. I get very confused when I study grammar.

Be careful how you use them – saying that your partner is boring, is very different than saying your partner is bored. Remember that people who are boring make other people feel bored.

Here’s a list of English adjectives that can have an ‘-ed’ and an ‘-ing’ form:

  • amused
  • amused
  • amusing
  • annoyed
  • annoying
  • confused
  • confusing
  • disappointed
  • disappointing
  • excited
  • exciting
  • exhausted
  • exhausting
  • frightened
  • frightening
  • satisfied
  • satisfying
  • shocked
  • shocking

Test your English adjective in the following exercise:

  1. I ran for 2 hours.  Now I feel (tired/tiring)
  2. She’s (bored/boring) of living in England. She’s looking for a house in Spain.
  3. We were (surprising/surprised) to hear he’s 50.  He looks much younger.
  4. You look (worried/worrying).  What’s wrong?
  5. The news of the attack was (shocked/shocking).
  6. Some of my Jamie Olivier’s comments are very (insulted/insulting)
  7. The series I’m watching is (interesting/interested).
  8. My results were rather (disappointing/disappointed).
  9. There’s nothing more (excited/exciting) than travelling.
  10. Did you see show? I was (amazing/amazed)!

Answer Key

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