1

When a verb ends with a "e" that is pronounced, do you get rid of the "e" when you add "-ing"?

For example, would you say "His karaoking last night was really unique", or "His karaokeing last night was really unique"?

3
  • I realise I'm asking about the appropriate spelling of a somewhat appropriate gerunding of an inappropriate verbing of an inappropriate form of entertainment, but I couldn't come up with a better example.
    – Golden Cuy
    Jul 14, 2014 at 3:23
  • While the question in legitimate, it should be noted that the word given in the example, karaoke is a noun, or adjective, e.g. "Karaoke contest tonight". I've never seen it used as a verb, except in the example given above. "Be", "agree" and "free" are better examples, and in adding "ing", the "e" is not dropped.
    – brasshat
    Jul 14, 2014 at 6:14
  • @Brasshat Karaoke is just a noun, not an adjective. In karaoke contest, it's a noun adjunct. Just about any noun can be verbed in English, though, so Andrew's example is not particularly far-fetched. Jul 14, 2014 at 7:23

2 Answers 2

2

Unlike a case such as "make", in this case the -e represents a vowel in the pronunciation; that vowel remains pronounced when -ing is added, and so there's no reason to remove the -e. Hence: karaokeing.

As with a case such a ski > skiing, you may get a slight yod ([j] sound) introduced, but this isn't represented in the spelling.

2

You can probably just add -ing and retain the sounded <e>. This would be the case for the verb recce, a clipping of recconoitre used in British English. I would write recceing. And in your case, karaokeing. In the past the hyphen was call into service for such situations (hence ski-ing) but we are less fond of hyphens these days.

For the past tense form, you can also add the -d the regular way. Again in the past, the apostrophe might have been used. Thus, karaoked (or possibly karaoke'd) and recced (or recce'd).

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.