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e.g. They were unable to help her.

They were not likely to forget it.

I am willing to try.

I'm prepared to say I was wrong.

4. When we want to express an opinion about someone or something, we often use an adjective followed by a to-infinitive clause.

difficult easy impossible possible right wrong

e.g. She had been easy to deceive.

The windows will be almost impossible to open.

Am I wrong to stay here?

5. With some adjectives, we use a that-clause to express an opinion about someone or something.

awful bad essential

extraordinary funny good

important interesting obvious

sad true

e.g. I was sad that people had reacted in this way.

. It is extraordinary that we should ever have met!

6. We can also use adjectives with to-infinitive clauses after it as the impersonal subject. We use the preposition of or for to indicate the person or thing that the adjective relates to.

e.g. It was easy to find the path.

It was good of John to help me.

It was difficult for her to find a job.

Adjectives ending in -ing or -ed

1. We use many -ing adjectives to describe the effect that something has on our feelings, or on the feelings of people in general. For example, if we talk about 'a surprising number', we mean that the number surprises us.

alarming amazing annoying astonishing boring

charming confusing convincing depressing disappointing

embarrassing exciting frightening interesting shocking

surprising terrifying tiring welcoming worrying

e.g. He lives in a charming house just outside the town.

She always has a warm welcoming smile.

2. We use some -ing adjectives to describe something that continues over a period of time.

ageing booming

decreasing dying

existing increasing

living remaining

e.g. Britain is an ageing society.

Increasing prices are making food very expensive.

3. Many -ed adjectives describe people's feelings. They have the same form as the past participle of a transitive verb and have a passive meaning. For example, a frightened person is a person who has been frightened by something.

alarmed amused astonished bored

delighted depressed disappointed excited

frightened interested satisfied shocked

surprised tired troubled worried

e.g. She looks alarmed about something.

A bored student complained to his teacher.

She had big blue frightened eyes.

Note that the past participles of irregular verbs do not end in -ed, but can be used as adjectives.

e.g. The bird had a broken wing.

His coat was dirty and torn.

4. Like other adjectives, -ing and -ed adjectives can be:

used in front of a noun

They still show amazing loyalty to their parents.

This is the most terrifying tale ever written.

: 25/08/2007