satisfactory and satisfying

bg1996

Senior Member
Cantonese,Mandarin;Kwangtung/Guangdong,hk
"I never got a satisfactory answer."
"I found wood carving satisfying."

My question is : When both of two words are adjectives, their meaning and usages are same?
 
  • Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    No, not really. "Satisfying" is the act of being satisfied. As an adjective, it can mean that wood carving is a comforting or gratifying hobby and that it is "satisfying" to do it. Think of "satisfactory" as the end result. You've carved your wooden duck :)eek:) and find that it's "satisfactory".
     

    bg1996

    Senior Member
    Cantonese,Mandarin;Kwangtung/Guangdong,hk
    Hei, Dimcl, thank you for your reply.

    And I read this example in my book:
    "Success has made it a satisfying and enriching task."
    Then, "task" has gone to its end, then, it can(OR ought to
    ) be changed into "satisfactory"?
     

    Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    Hei, Dimcl, thank you for your reply.

    And I read this example in my book:
    "Success has made it a satisfying and enriching task."
    Then, "task" has gone to its end, then, it can(OR ought to
    ) be changed into "satisfactory"?
    No, it has to remain "satisfying", BG. Again, think of it in terms of action and completion. Just as in the wood carving example, this task has been satisfying to do. While doing it, the people who did it found it to be a satisfying task. When they have finished, they can look back on their efforts and say "We did a satisfactory job". It is the job/task itself that is or isn't satisfactory (maybe they did a horrible job) - it is the process of doing it that is satisfying.
     

    Antigua

    Banned
    English (America)
    "I never got a satisfactory answer."
    "I found wood carving satisfying."
    These two words have different meanings.

    Satisfactory = good enough. Like when your teacher gives you a grade, or when you go shopping for something.

    Satisfying = the emotional feeling you have inside yourself.

    I never got a satisfactory answer = the answers were not good enough.

    I find wood carving satisfying. I like wood carving; it makes me feel happy.

    These two words look similar, but the meaning is different.
     

    verbivore

    Banned
    USA, English
    Satisfying means "pleasing"; satisfactory means adequate or O.K. They are both adjectives, the former being a participle and thus having a meaning close to the verb from which it is derived, to satisfy.
     
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