Where is the stress placed in the word commenting? Is it on the first or the second syllable? How do you pronounce it?

  • 3
    I am British. Commenting would be my pronunciation.
    – Karl
    Apr 17, 2011 at 2:44
  • 1
    It is stressed on the first syllable only. In other words, it's a dactyl. Note that this is different from commending, which is stressed on the second syllable.
    – Robusto
    Apr 17, 2011 at 12:03
  • 1
    @Robusto初夢 I can’t think of a verb where adding -ing ever changes the stress pattern. Can you?
    – tchrist
    Jan 15, 2012 at 15:51
  • @tchrist: Depends on the dialect, I guess. In some varieties of Southern U.S. speech, for example, the verb display stresses the first syllable, but displaying stresses the second, or at least makes the stresses equal.
    – Robusto
    Jan 15, 2012 at 16:14
  • Coh-menting
    – Dog Lover
    May 24, 2016 at 0:42

3 Answers 3


It's stressed on the first syllable. A similar looking word is "commencing", which is stressed on the second syllable.


The stress is on the first syllable, as both descriptive and prescriptive linguists would agree.


I'm not a native English speaker, but I think the stress should be on the "m"(which I feel is read more comfortable): [kə'menting].

  • As a non-native speaker I thought the stress should be on the "m", too. But, after a look at a dictionary, I released that it's on the first and third syllable.
    – Ed. Brazil
    Apr 17, 2011 at 10:34
  • @Ed. Brazil: Hi Ed, could you share the dictionary you turned to on this? I am always using Cambridge online dictionary(dictionary.cambridge.org) but I don't find an entry for "commenting". Hmm.. I should have done more googling before answering here.. :-)
    – yaobin
    Apr 17, 2011 at 11:09
  • It's the participle from the verb comment. When adding the "-ing" suffix to a verb to form the participle, the added syllable is always unstressed.
    – psmears
    Apr 17, 2011 at 12:54
  • The dictionary I use is this: dictionary.reference.com. You won't find "Commenting", you can find "Comment". But, if you see that the first syllable is stressed, after adding the suffix the first syllable will still be stressed.
    – Ed. Brazil
    Apr 17, 2011 at 14:05
  • 1
    If you did stress the second syllable of comment or commenting this would be a sure sign that you are not a native English speaker. Unlike some other languages, in English stress is both lexical (is part of the word and must be memorized) and phonemic (different stress produces different words, even if they have the same consonant sounds: as in desert and dessert.)
    – ghoppe
    Apr 17, 2011 at 22:44

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