Showing posts with label past tense. Show all posts
Showing posts with label past tense. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Quotation Marks and Dialogue

Quotation marks are used to identify words that someone has said. You’ll often find them in fiction, where they signify dialogue, the words spoken by the characters. In newspapers, journalists use quotation marks to signify that something is a direct quote from a person in the article. In academic papers, quotation marks can signify that you are quoting material that was written by someone else.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Is it Used To or Use To? How to Use Both

Don’t feel bad if you mix up use to and used to now and again—it is not an uncommon mistake. Used to is a phrase that can mean “accustomed or habituated to” or refers to something from the past that is no longer true. Use to and used to are also frequently used in English grammar as modal verb phrases.

”Use” Followed by an Infinitive

Before we get into idiomatic meanings for the phrase used to, it is worth pointing out that both use and used can correctly appear before to when to is part of the infinitive of a second verb.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Led or Lead—The Past Tense of Lead?

  • Led is the correct way to spell the past tense of lead.
  • Lead is a common misspelling of the past tense of the verb lead.

The past tense of the verb lead is led, not lead. One reason for the confusion might be that a similar verb, read, has an infinitive that’s spelled the same as the past tense. But with lead, that’s not how things are.

Definition of Led

Led is the past tense of the verb lead:

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

That’s How You Say It? 9 Words with Tricky Pronunciations

If you read a lot, you probably have an excellent vocabulary. But it also means that you may know a lot of words that you’ve only seen in writing and never heard spoken aloud. Sometimes even common words are easy to misread. Language enthusiasts have coined the term “misle” for a word that leads you to incorrect assumptions about its pronunciation. It comes from the word misled (as in, the past tense of mislead), which many language lovers admit to misreading at one time or another as the past tense of some imaginary verb along the lines of “to misle.”

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Spelled or Spelt?

The verb spell commonly means to write or name the letters making up a word in the right order. Spell is a verb with irregular and regular forms. Spelled and spelt are both common forms of the past tense and the past participle of spell, though with geographical differences.

Learn more about the details of this difference, as well as additional uses for spelt, below.

Spelled or Spelt—Which Is Correct?

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Canceled or Cancelled?

This word is a student’s best friend and a concert-goer’s most dreaded nightmare. Take these two signs:

Snow day: school canceled.

Drummer has food poisoning: performance cancelled.

So, which spelling is correct? The answer depends on where you call home.

Canceled or cancelled is the past tense of the verb to cancel. Both spellings are correct; Americans favor canceled (one L), while cancelled (two Ls) is preferred in British English and other dialects.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Sequence of Tenses–Grammar Rules

The rules governing verb tenses are dictated by logic; an action in the future obviously cannot happen before an action in the past. In writing, it’s a matter of looking at your clauses and sentences and determining when each action is happening relative to everything else. The past must come before the present, and the present before the future, etc. Pay particular attention to the verb sequence when you have a dependent clause before an independent clause, or a result clause before the if-clause.