a suffix of nouns formed from verbs, expressing the action of the verb or its result, product, material, etc., as in the art of building, a new building, cotton wadding. It is also used to form nouns from words other than verbs, as in offing, shirting. Verbal nouns ending in -ing are often used attributively, as in the printing trade, and in composition, as in drinking song. In some compounds, as sewing machine, the first element might reasonably be regarded as the participial adjective (see -ing2), the compound thus meaning `a machine that sews', but it is commonly taken as a verbal noun, the compound being explained as `a machine for sewing'.

{Middle English -ing, Old English -ing, -ung}
a suffix forming the present participle of verbs, such participles often being used as adjectives (participial adjectives), as in warring factions. Compare -ing1.

{Middle English -ing, -inge; replacing Middle English -inde, -ende, Old English -ende}

Australian English dictionary. 2014.

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