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  1. #1
    Offroad's Avatar
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    Post lying vs lain down

    Dear teachers

    Do any of these sentences read well?

    I saw a man lain down in the road. He'd hit a horse with his bike.
    I saw a man lying in the road. He hit a horse with his bike.

    Thank you

  2. #2
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Re: lying vs lain down

    I saw a man lying in the road. He had hit a horse with his bike.

  3. #3
    Offroad's Avatar
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    Re: lying vs lain down

    So, can we assume the use of 'lie down' implies someone lies intentionally?

    Many thanks

  4. #4
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    Re: lying vs lain down

    Quote Originally Posted by Offroad View Post
    So, can we assume the use of 'lie down' implies someone lies intentionally?

    Many thanks
    Often that is the case, but in the case of a man lying in the road after an accident, it would not be the case.

  5. #5
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    Re: lying vs lain down

    Perhaps the action "to lie down" is deliberate, but once someone or something is on the ground (or other flat surface), he/she/it is lying. If I drop my clothes on the floor, they just lie there. It annoys my husband that my clothes are always just lying all over the place.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  6. #6
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    Lain down is either poetic or archaic, not everyday usage.

  7. #7
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    Re: lying vs lain down

    Either way, the poor man was rushed to hospital. It was raining heavily - I could barely see him.
    Never heard what happened to the horse.

  8. #8
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Re: lying vs lain down

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    Lain down is either poetic or archaic, not everyday usage.
    That may be so, but as the past participle of 'lie' (intr), without 'down', 'lain' is alive and well.

    'The wreckage of the Titanic has lain at the bottom of the Atlantic since 1912.'

    For many other recent examples, students can read more here.

    Rover

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