welcome vs welcomed

< Previous | Next >


Senior Member
The word "welcome" can be used as an adjective or a verb. From the verb can be derived the past participle "welcomed," which can also be seen as an adjective. So we have two adjectival forms: welcome and welcomed. While in most cases I know which one to choose in a given sentence, there are some instances where both seem acceptable to me, but I'm not sure if my gut feeling serves me right. Can someone here clarify the following example for me? Thank you very much.

Example: "We would welcome any comment."
Grammatically, the sentence can be put in the passive structure: Any comment would be welcomed.
My question is: can we say "Any comment would be welcome"? (without the final "d")
Are both sentences correct?

For I saw the following sample sentence from Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English:
"A cup of tea would be very welcome."
And I wonder if it is acceptable to say "A cup of tea would be welcomed" instead.

Last edited:
  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    Mostly we'd say 'welcome' where it was possible, though 'welcomed' isn't wrong in those sentences. But passive 'would be welcomed' suggests "would be welcomed by someone (unmentioned)", whereas in the normal situation we know who it'd be welcome to - so use the adjective.


    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    Yes, both constructions are acceptable. I'd say the adjectival form ("welcome") is more popular than the participial form ("welcomed") for both examples (comment and cup of tea).
    You can't modify the participle in the same way as you can modify the article, but it seems you already know this, because you've removed the "very":

    A cup of tea would be very welcomed. :cross:
    A cup of tea would be much welcomed. :tick:
    A cup of tea would be much welcome.


    Senior Member
    English - England
    Any comment would be welcome. :tick:

    Any comment would be welcomed. :tick: This means ' . . . would be welcomed by us/the committee/the meeting/etc'

    A cup of tea would be very welcome. :tick:

    A cup of tea would be welcomed. :tick: This is OK, but sounds a bit unnatural compared to 'welcome'. It means ' . . . would be welcomed by us/them/the members/etc'



    Senior Member
    English - England
    In simple terms, the adjective is far more common than the participle when describing something for which you are/will or would be grateful.

    A <noun [phrase]> is/are/was/will or would be welcome.

    For somebody, the verb form is probably more appropriate.

    <Name> is/are/was/will or should be welcomed [at the entrance/to the place [by <another name>]]

    Given this guidance, although "Any comment would be welcomed." is OK, it is unusual, and I have never heard "A cup of tea would be welcomed".


    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    I think the distinction which Paul draws between welcoming something and welcoming somebody is really due to it being a different kind of welcoming. When you welcome a person (especially on arrival), you are committing an act, making a gesture, and this is something which requires a verb; an adjective would not work.

    But if, for example, one is discussing which speakers to invite to a series of talks, one would consider how welcome various potential speakers, and their likely topics, would be to the audience, and then the adjective would still work better than the participle.
    < Previous | Next >