I'm writing an article in which I should describe the parameters used in a model. The article is about trips in a city. Now, I want to define parameter (Ti) which shows the trips that originate from region (i) in the city. How should I say that?

"(Ti) shows trips departed (originated) from region (i)"?


"(Ti) shows trips departing (originating) from region (i)"?

  • 1
    I would use departing from when referring to a specific location and originating in when referring to a region. – Mick Nov 2 '16 at 13:16
  • 1
    If you have city regions, and the Trips begin from those points, you have a departing point and an arriving point for trips: Ti shows [city] region points of departure. – Lambie Nov 2 '16 at 13:22
  • @Mick So, "departed" is not correct. Can you tell me why? – Omid Reza Abbasi Nov 2 '16 at 13:36
  • I can't explain, I'm afraid. We need a grammarian. – Mick Nov 2 '16 at 13:44

This question is about a nuance of language that would probably go unnoticed to any casual reader, and in my opinion you could use either one without causing any misunderstanding (on a side note, I agree with @Mick that trips originate in a region and not from a region).

If you want to be very precise, the past participle traditionally means that the action is in a steady state; in this case departed conveys the meaning that the action of departure has been completed and that there is some separation between the object and the point of origin. On the other hand, the present participle departing means that the action is still ongoing.

For example I would consider an airplane during take-off as still "departing" if it has not yet left the runway, and "departed" the instant it's airborne. On the other hand, the flight itself, as a regular scheduled service, is never described as "departed" because it does not move: I would always describe it as "departing", like this:

  • The flight departing from London at 10.40 arrives in Moscow at 17.25 local time.
  • The plane to Moscow departed from London at 10.40 and arrived at 17.25 local time.

In your specific case, following this line of reasoning, since the trip itself does not move, and there is no separation - rather the contrary, it's like a line connecting two dots - I would always describe it as "departing".

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.