The verbs lie and lay confuse many people.
If you learn their definitions, it might help you keep them straight.
Lie means "to be or to stay at rest in a horizontal position," while lay means "to beat or strike down with force" or "to put or set down."
The past tense (or -ed form) of lie is lay, and the -ing form is lying.
In casual conversation, if you say I think I'll lay down, then that's fine with me, but if you want your writing to be correct, then put those little fingers on the computer keys and tap out I think I'll lie down.
The past tense (or -ed form) of lay is laid, and the -ing form is laying.
Example: Students, please lay your essay papers on the table. The students did as they were told yesterday and laid their essay papers on the table.
If your dog only responds to "lay down," then he doesn't know standard English usage. Please teach him to "lie down."
Infinities of love,
Source: Understanding English Grammar by Martha Kolln
It's very confusing and I wrestled with this earlier today. You've helped clarify. Thank you. Admittedly, confusion continues to lie within. (Is that right?)ReplyDelete
I am just confusedReplyDelete
I'm confused about many things, such as why do we have a president named Trump?Delete
HA! You crack me up. (And that's no LIE!)Delete
You cracked me up first.Delete
I had a friend whose dad was in school administration. Whenever we used lie/lay incorrectly as kids he would say "people lie, chickens lay"ReplyDelete
That's an excellent tip.Delete
Hi Janie - I hope I know which is which ... but for now can only think of Lay Lady Lay ... have a good week -cheers HilaryReplyDelete
Lay across my big brass bed . . .Delete
This has always confused me and I admit that I will go out of my way to rewrite a sentence without using the word, just to avoid making a mistake. lolReplyDelete
Google will help you write your sentence. Google knows all.Delete
I think it's that whole past tense being the other word that started the confusion. I mean, come on, creators of English, the past tense of lie is lay but lay is a totally different word? Let's try a second draft, Marriam and Webster (who I presume are the creators of grammar, or was it Strunk and White?).ReplyDelete
I am the creator.Delete
Thanks for this one, Janie. I'm guilty. I always do get confused with this one. Hope you are doing well.ReplyDelete
I'm fine, thanks.Delete
HAHA! I had a good laugh with the comment about the dog! Thanks for another great lesson.ReplyDelete
When I make a grammatical error, Franklin and Penelope give me a hard time.Delete
I've always struggled a bit with this, I must confess. Thanks for the clarification!ReplyDelete
I've heard a lot of dogs being told to "Go lay down."ReplyDelete
Dogs are appalled by that.Delete
Thanks for this. My dogs do lie down, that's to say Faith does, while Samson gives me the look and walks away. Nordic breeds are hard to train, but so sweet.ReplyDelete
Samson and Faith are such cutie pies.Delete
English grammar, as you know better than most, is maddening. I say this a non-native speaker who learned it starting in fifth grade. We conjugated verbs ad nauseam only to discover we needed to memorize all the irregular ones, and it seemed like there were more of those than the regular ones.ReplyDelete
English grammar has driven many people to madness.Delete
I'm so often thankful that I was such a reader, because the more you read of what's written correctly, the more it comes naturally to write and speak correctly. I would not like having to learn correct usage at this point in my life. But you are doing a great job of helping people do just that.ReplyDelete
Reading good books makes a huge difference in the way we speak and write.Delete
I do get confused. I still think I am going to go lay myself down because I am not already lying down. I am setting myself down to sleep. Probably is an issue of my body having always felt like a separate part of me--LOL! I am going to lie myself down sounds weird to my ear. They have always been confusing to me and I think they still are. ;)ReplyDelete
Why don't you lie down to take a nap? It will all be better when you awake.Delete
I always tell my dog to lie down. He doesn't always listen tho.ReplyDelete
Try "lay down" to see what he does.Delete
For decades, children have been kneeling beside their beds every night saying, "Now I lay me down to sleep..." (Maybe because generations of parents didn't want to encourage their little angels to "lie"...?)ReplyDelete
That prayer is the worst: If I should die before I wake . . .Delete
There are certain verbs that I nearly always check, and these are two of them. I used to teach third grade and there, their, and they're were the bane of my existence! LOL You explained it all so well! Have a good one!ReplyDelete
I look up many words before I dare to use them.Delete
I would be lying if I claimed to ever have this correct!ReplyDelete
This is one of those matters of usage that I usually have to think a bit before coming to a conclusion and even then I sometimes wonder if I've used it correctly. You've clarified it for me. Now if I can remember I'll be doing good.ReplyDelete
Tossing It Out