2

My question is - which of the two phrases above sound better/worse?

  • His dishonesty

OR

  • His being dishonest

Actually, the question is not only about this particular noun/adjective pair, but extends to other verbs and nouns. Like in the following:

  • Her selfishness VS her being selfish
  • Their irresponsibility VS their being irresponsible

Is there any difference in meaning between "his + noun" and "his being + adjective" ?

4

English is a context-dependent language. Since you have provided none we could generalise and say:

'his dishonesty' refers to a trait.

'his being dishonest' refers to a single instance.

Context could override the above generalisation.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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