~ing/~ed adjectives(Boring/ Bored, Tired/Tiring)

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“I was so bored during the movie”

“The movie I saw was so boring

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“I am tired after a long week.”

“My week at work was so tiring


In English we have some adjectives that can have the suffix (word ending) “–ing” or “–ed”. English learners often get them mixed up.

The “–ed” ending describes how a person feels. “I was bored” = “I felt boredom.” “I am tired” = “I feel tiredness”.

The “-ing” ending describes the source of those feelings. “The movie was boring” = “The movie gave me boredom.” “My week was tiring” = “My week gave me tiredness”.

This is the same for all of these kind of adjectives: frightened/ frightening, embarrassed/ embarrassing, infuriated/ infuriating … etc.


If you make a mistake with these two forms it can sound kind of silly.

“I am boring” = “I give other people the feeling of boredom, I am the cause of boredom.”

“The movie was excited” = “the movie is alive, and experienced the feeling of excitement.”


And be careful when you talk about other people:

“My friend is boring.” = “My friend makes other people feel boredom”

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“My friend is bored.” = “My friend feels boredom.”

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Both of those sentences have proper grammar, but very different meanings.