Doubling the Final Consonant in a Verb


In a one-syllable verb ending in one consonant letter preceded by one vowel letter, double the final consonant letter (never double "w, x, y").

beg begging begged
blur blurring blurred
flip flipping flipped
plan planning planned
stop stopping stopped
thin thinning thinned
rub rubbing rubbed
split splitting (split)
step stepping stepped
stir stirring stirred
swim swimming (swam, swum)
tap tapping tapped
wrap wrapping wrapped
fix fixing fixed
play playing played
plow plowing plowed

If the verb ends with "e", drop "e", then add "ing" or "ed". Do not double the consonant letter.

come coming (come, came)
date dating dated
dine dining dined
hide hiding (hid, hidden)
hope hoping hoped
injure injuring injured
ride riding (rode, ridden)
slide sliding slid
smile smiling smiled
type typing typed
write writing (wrote, written)

If a verb has two vowel letters before the final consonant letter, do not double the consonant letter.

bleed bleeding (bled)
eat eating (ate; eaten)
rain raining rained
ruin ruining ruined
seat seating seated
fool fooling fooled
dream dreaming dreamed/dreamt
feel feeling felt

When a verb ends with "y", and before "y", it's a consonant, change "y" to "i", and then add "ed". (Never double "y, x, w")

carry carrying carried
dry drying dried
fry frying fried
fly flying (flew; flown)
reply replying replied
study studying studied
try trying tried
worry worrying worried


        

When a verb ends with "y" and before "y" there is only one vowel letter, do not change "y" to "i"; simply add "ing" or "ed".

buy buying (bought)
employ employing employed
enjoy enjoying enjoyed
play playing played
pray praying prayed
stay staying stayed


For a two-syllable or three-syllable verb, if the last syllable is stressed, follow the one-syllable word spelling rule to double the final consonant letter.

acquit acquitting acquitted
admit admitting admitted
begin beginning (began, begun)
commit committing committed
control controlling controlled
deter deterring deterred
excel excelling excelled
occur occurring occurred
prefer preferring preferred
refer referring referred
submit submitting submitted
transfer transferring transferred


If the last syllable is not stressed, do not double the final consonant letter.

budget budgeting budgeted
benefit benefiting benefited
cancel canceling canceled (US)
counsel counseling counseled
happen happening happened
listen listening listened
marvel marveling marveled
offer offering offered
open opening opened
quarrel quarreling quarreled
ripen ripening ripened
visit visiting visited
travel traveling traveled (US)
vomit vomiting vomited
worship worshiping worshiped (US)


There are some exceptions.

quit quitting (quit)
debut debuting debuted
exit exiting exited
tie tying tied
die dying died
lie lying lied


ESL: English as a Second Language

ESL Fast