We are [color=red]gathered here today to join this man and this woman in holy matrimony.

Is “gathered” here be used as an adjective?


I’d say it’s a verb but it is synonymous with the adjective ‘collected’: we are collected here.

If it’s a verb, how do I understand the use of the present tense here?

Good question. Maybe you’re right. :slight_smile:

Hi Ruifeng,

In your sentence:

The word ‘gathered’ isn’t used adjectivally but as a verb because the action refers to the process of these people being brought together. If you suggested that it was an adjective, you would indicate that ‘we’ (the people there) are ‘gathered’ sort of people. The present tense indicates that the people have come together now. It is possible to say: We are come together … and clearly you wouldn’t regard ‘come’ as an adjective.


But this seems to me to be a very unusual way of using the present tense. Why not use “We have gathered…” “we have come…”? What’s the difference?


It has a passive sense with the idea of: we are gathered here (by perhaps a common interest).


Then what about “We are come together…”? There is no passive sense there.

Hello Alan,

“We are gathered here…” isn’t it a simple present in passive voice (means: we are already come (past. part) together here… = everybody arrived and we can say we are gathered at last.

We gather here –is a simple present in active voice( means: we come together here)

I ask this that’s why if I see a verb in past participle before it there is „be” in a decilned form I take it passive voice. Am I right or I am mistaken?

Kati Svaby

It seems to me that “we are gathered” is a borderline case that can be construed either as adjectival or as a passive verb.

To me, this case is similar to ‘we are finished’ or ‘we are done’.[YSaerTTEW443543]

TOEIC listening, talks: Supervisor is giving instructions about payroll procedures and company policy to new employees[YSaerTTEW443543]

My problem that I looked for gathered (adj):
-In Oxford Dictionary
-Merriam Dictionary
-Cambridge Dictionary
-Bartleby Dictionary
-Webster Dictionary ( where I found one single adjective in a reference : gathered skirt)

These dictionaries say the same.

Gather (v) come together
………………= brings things together
………………= collect informations from different places

………………= collect plants, fruits etc.
………………= 5.collect corps
………………= to believe or understand that something is true because of information or evidence you have
-„She won’t be coming. So I gather.
-As far as I can gather, he got involved in a fight.
7. to increese in speed :His car gathered speed.
8. to gradually increase number or amount
-The storm clouds were gathereing.
9. to pull a piece of clothing together in folds and sew them in place
She wore a skirt gathered (in) at the waist. (*** Only in this meaning I found in the Webstern Dictionary an example for gathered (adj) = gathered skirt) pull sb towards you and put your arms around them.
-She gathered the child in her arms and held him close. prepare yourself to do sth. That requires effort:
-I sat down for a moment to gather my stregth.

  1. gatherer (n)

  2. gathering (n)

  3. gathers (n)

Anywhere there isn’t any adjective mentioned in these dictionaries.

I’m not sure that’s very conclusive. Dictionaries may just assume the potential for participles to be used adjectivally according to the general rules of English, without specifically listing them as such. For example, I couldn’t even find “fragmented” listed separately as an adjective in several dictionaries I’ve just checked.

You are incredible! That’s nothing! You call in question the most famous dictionaries rather than you look them up, and control that I copied not for you but for everybody.

It is interesting that gathered (adj) why means only this,- and in the English-Hungarian dictionary it has even an other meaning: purulent/gathered finger = containing or producing pus
pus: a thick yellowish or greenish liquid that is produced in an infected wound.

Hi Kati,

Dozy wasn’t questioning the accuracy of the dictionaries or the truth of what you say. (He wasn’t even disagreeing with what you say). He was trying to explain that dictionaries often only give the root form or most common forms of a word, rather than every variation.

oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries … red#gather

The best dictionaries are based on historical principles. In other words they say it how it is. Dictionaries don’t aspire to be didactic’. It’s woolly thinking to expect dictionaries to be grammar books.


Dear Bez,
I am very sorry that I couldn’t reply sooner but I wasn’t at home.
What Dozzy says I can’t explain other ways that he saves what he can.

His example isn’t true:
“For example, I couldn’t even find “fragmented” listed separately as an adjective in several dictionaries I’ve just checked.”

It means if “fragmented” adj. isn’t in the dictionaries, it is a good proof that “gathered” (adj.) could be left out.
But ‘gathered’ figures in two places than “gathered skirt” ( Webster’s)in and “gathered finger”(in English-Hungarian with the gathered skirt together.
However “fragmented” (adj) figures in Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (New 8th Edition)(on 615 page)
fragment (v.) (T.I.)
fragment (n) ©
fragmentation (n) (U)
-a fragmented society
In the Merriam-Webster’s are the same.
-fragmented (adj)(more fragmented, most fragmented)
-:black_small_square: We live in an increasingly fragmented society. :black_small_square: a fragmented market

Dear Bez,

I had examined this link what you sent to me but here I don’t find ‘gathered’ as an adjective.

Many thanks.

Hello Alan,

Of course I believe everything to you.

I would think logically that ‘gathered’ be any kind of adjective.( according his verbs) It would be logic that I could say ‘The gathered company has a good time’. But I am not a native and I have to control the things.
My first question was:
" We are gathered here "-isn’t a simple present of passive voice?

After I control whether gathered could be an adjective. Every dictionary doesn’t mention it as an adjective.
Difficultly I found two examples: ‘gathered skirt’ and ‘gathered finger’ and nothing else.
I would be very grateful if you reveal me what kind of nouns we can say together ‘gathered’ as an adjective.

Best regards:
Kati Svaby

You don’t even know what dictionaries I checked.

Apart from the fact that you seem indignant about something, I have really no idea what most of the rest of your posts mean. Most of what you write is incomprehensible to me.

My intention was not to try to prove its use as an adjective at all. (If you look at message 2 you will see that my first thought was that it is a verb.)
I included the link as an example of how a word listed under the heading of ‘gather’ has examples that include ‘gathered’ and ‘gathering’.