English is a very creative language in the sense that new words are invented every day, and one easy way to create a new term is to make compound nouns or adjectives. As you can see, all these examples are formed by adding -ed to an adjective-noun combination.
These compounds can be written as one word (waterproof), two separate words (brick red) or they can be hyphenated (snow-white). A combination in which the first element takes the suffix -o: socio-economic, Anglo-Saxon, Franco-German, Anglo-American. A combination in which the first adjective qualifies the second adjective: dark-blue, red-hot, Roman-Catholic.


These words can be adjectives, nouns, adverbs or participles, and they can be hyphenated or not. Notice that adjectives using numbers, like any other adjectives, are not found in the plural. Cold-blooded is a compound adjective made up of an adjective and a noun, to which the suffix-ed has been added. A hyphen is a punctuation mark in the form of a short line (-) that is put between two words to join them. Thus, a boy who is twelve years old is a twelve-year-old boy, or a tree which measures three metres is a three-metre-tall tree.


This word ending in -ed may look like a participle but in fact it is not, because in order to be a participle, the root has to be a verb, not a noun. But British and American English don't always use the hyphens in the same word combinations, so, when in doubt, check a good dictionary!



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