It seems some verbs change the stressed syllable in the -ing form:

  • proCESS -- PROcessing
  • transPORT -- TRANsporting

and some do not:

  • diRECT -- diRECTing
  • proVIDE -- proVIDing

Is this related with that the verbs of the first group have initial-stress-derived nouns? Or, what is the rule?

  • The stress in the verb process normally falls on its first syllable, not its second. And it is hardly uncommon to hear the verb transport with initial stress.
    – tchrist
    Nov 1, 2020 at 0:37
  • Are you asking about British à english or American English? The two dialects differ on this very point.
    – Tuffy
    Nov 1, 2020 at 0:49
  • 1
    It's English...
    – Hot Licks
    Nov 1, 2020 at 1:13
  • @Tuffy I would be interested in both, British and American. Nov 1, 2020 at 4:15

1 Answer 1


The only rule about stress for the -ing form of a verb is that it falls in the same place as in the other forms of the verb.

The verbs that you mention don't actually change their stressed syllable in the -ing form.

Procéss and prócess are two different verbs with different meanings: procéss has a meaning like "to move in a procession" and prócess has a meaning like "to change something for some purpose". Their -ing forms are procéssing and prócessing respectively. The -ing form procéssing is probably more often encountered as present participle ("They were procéssing down the street") than as a gerund, since the noun procéssion is used to refer to the action of procéssing. (In fact, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, the verb procéss is derived from the noun procéssion.) The -ing form prócessing has the same form as a commonly used deverbal noun prócessing.

Transport is one verb with two pronunciations: tránsport and transpórt. Either pronunciation can be used in any of the forms of the verb, so both tránsporting and transpórting exist, as well as tránsported and transpórted. The pronunciation of the verb as tránsport may be due to influence from the noun tránsport, but it can be used in any form of the verb, not just the -ing form. Another verb that can have the stress placed on either syllable with no difference in meaning is transfer.

  • I was thinking of the procession of the equinoxes.
    – tchrist
    Nov 1, 2020 at 0:37
  • @tchrist: usually we talk about the equinoxes precessing, not processing (although in fact they do both). Nov 1, 2020 at 0:40
  • @AlexanderGelbukh: Yes, that's exactly so. Here's a Youtube clip with an example of the stress pattern transpórting: youtu.be/-gUnAF9xFnQ?t=78
    – herisson
    Nov 1, 2020 at 0:48

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