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RMIT University Library - Learning Lab

Patterns 1 & 2


Words with a silent 'e'

If a word ends with a silent 'e', drop the 'e' before adding an ending that begins with a vowel. Common endings that begin with a vowel are 'ed', 'er', 'en', 'ing' and 'ous'.


ripe + en = ripen

tape + ed = taped

take + ing = taking

If a word ends in 'ce' or 'ge', you keep the 'e' when you add 'ous' or 'able'.


marriage + able = marriageable

service + able = serviceable

outrage + ous = outrageous

Doubling the last consonant

In single syllable words ending in a consonant that follows a vowel, you double the consonant when adding 'ed', 'er', 'est' and 'ing'.


tap + p + ing = tapping

rub + b + ing = rubbing

Remember this is only the case when a single consonant follows a single vowel.


feel + ing = feeling

meet + ing = meeting