1

How do I distinguish whether to use v-ing or v-ed within compound adjective?

2
  • 1
    time-consumed doesn't exist as an established word. Its obvious meaning would be "consumed by time", which doesn't make much sense.
    – Colin Fine
    Dec 20 '20 at 16:23
  • @Colin Fine Yeah, it seems that I get the point
    – yixuan
    Dec 21 '20 at 4:44
1

To describe any event that takes a lot of time, we use the adjective "time-consuming", not "time-consumed".

From the Cambridge dictionary,

A time-consuming task takes a lot of time to do:
Producing a dictionary is a very time-consuming job.

"time consumed" is not an adjective and it takes on the meaning of "duration", i.e. the amount of time taken for an event.

  1. While the average length of meetings declined, the total time consumed by meetings increased substantially.
  2. To begin with, the time consumed in virtual meetings exploded.
7
  • But, what is the general rule of using ing or ed?
    – yixuan
    Dec 20 '20 at 10:24
  • @yixuan For the usage of -ing and -ed in general, you can check out this answer. -ed and -ing adjective, how to use it properly?
    – user86610
    Dec 20 '20 at 10:26
  • The task consumes your time, it doesn't have its time consumed. Dec 20 '20 at 12:22
  • @KateBunting Right, I can find scattered examples of such usage online - "While the average length of meetings declined, the total time consumed by meetings increased substantially." However, I agree it's an awkward way of saying it. Will update my answer, thanks for pointing out!
    – user86610
    Dec 20 '20 at 12:26
  • @user86610 My understanding is, for example: "time-consuming task", task is agent and time is patient, task will consume time, time is instead consumed. According to grammar, the phrase "time-consumed" seems to be more correct, although I am aware of that it's wrong.
    – yixuan
    Dec 20 '20 at 13:21

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .