Results 1 to 3 of 3
  1. #1
    Valaraukar Guest

    Default A question about irregular verbs which can't be answered :(

    Help!
    I'm learning English only at school but I hope you will understand me. I'm interested rather in literary style, even in archaic. I've got a question and I'm frustrated for nobody could answer me.
    I know that a lot of verbs have irregular and regular forms (for example - 'dwell') and in the UK the regular is more common. But I noticed that in books written by English writers the regular forms of the verbs: dream, burn, bless, leap, smell and learn - in Past Simple are more common. Nay! in "The Hobbit" (J.R.R.Tolkien) - I didn't found any "dreamt" or "burnt". I also saw "I blessed him" in the Biblie, and so forth.
    I know that the regular forms are often used as adjectives or participles ("a dreamed house"). But why in Past Simple?!

    I hope that there's someone who can help me...

    Greetings,

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    43,618
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: A question about irregular verbs which can't be answered :(

    I really can't help- I actually find myself using both the regular and irregular forms.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    12,970
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: A question about irregular verbs which can't be answered :(

    Having to remember which verbs take -ed and which verbs take -t is not all that efficient for the language user. In Nature, as well as in other systems, the more regular the system, the more efficient the system. That strive for effeciency is the driving force behind irregular forms becoming regular (e.g., in language, BrE: learnt ~ learned. 'learnt' is not all that common these days in BrE. That's not to say British speakers are adopting American forms. No, not that. The reason has to do what's easier to remember. Verbs that end in both -ed and -t (e.g., burned, burnt; dreamed, dreamt) share a common characteristic with verbs that end in -ed (e.g., walked, lifted). Given that irregular system (i.e., some have both forms, some have one form) it's more efficient to divide the suffixes:

    Use -ed for verbs (walked, burned, dreamed), and leave -t for participles (dreamt, burnt).

    Please note, blest, according to the Oxford Dictionary of Current English,is considered poetical. That is, blessed is the common past form.

Similar Threads

  1. Help ESL Learners Learn Irregular Verbs
    By RonBee in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 83
    Last Post: 09-Mar-2009, 09:18
  2. Usage Of Irregular Verbs
    By PRODICALJG in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 06-Nov-2004, 04:11
  3. meaning of irregular verbs
    By hela in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 18-Oct-2004, 13:30
  4. IRREGULAR VERBS
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 29-May-2004, 01:27
  5. Irregular Verbs
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 29-Jan-2003, 13:15

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •