Lie vs. Lay...help!

Discussion in 'General Education' started by teachin4ever, Oct 17, 2009.

  1. teachin4ever

    teachin4ever Cohort

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    Oct 17, 2009

    I'm grading papers and came across a sentence I'm not sure about.

    Should it be:

    "I went and layed down on the bed."

    OR

    "I went and lied down on the bed."

    I feel like a total idiot for not knowing this, but I always got confused with lie and lay. Help me, please! :blush:
     
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  3. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    Oct 17, 2009

    Lay requires a direct object. " I layed my my papers on the table" The second sentence is correct.
     
  4. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Oct 17, 2009

    I hate to disagree, but I think neither is correct.

    I think it's "lay". That's the past tense of lie.

    I went and lay down on the bed.
     
  5. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Oct 17, 2009

    I'm pretty sure that 'layed' isn't even a word.

    Lie/lay is the word you'd use to recline, like on a bed. Lie is the present tense, lay is the past tense.

    Right now I lie on my bed. Right now I am lying on my bed. Yesterday I lay on my bed.

    Lay/laid is the word you'd use to put something down. Lay is the present tense, laid is the past tense. Both words require a direct object.

    Right now I lay my books on the floor. Right now I am laying my books on the floor. Yesterday I laid my books on the floor.

    You can use laid as a passive, but sometimes the meaning changes. It means having sex.

    I totally got laid last weekend. :lol:
     
  6. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    Oct 17, 2009

    Sorry I was being sloppy there... I typed layed, meant laid.

    Lay according to the dictionary means to put down or set down
    Lie according to the dictionary means to assume a resting or horizontal position.

    I don't like the sentence either way, but lay or laid still requires a direct object.
     
  7. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Oct 17, 2009

    Ms. Muller, lay doesn't require a direct object when it's the past tense of lie, though.
     
  8. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    Oct 17, 2009

    I believe you are correct, I was going off the lessons in the HM edition that we use at school. These are the supported references that I was going by. But, you are correct when its being used as the past tense... Sorry

    As an aid in choosing the correct verb forms, remember that lie means to recline, whereas lay means to place something, to put something on something.

    • Lie means that the actor (subject) is doing something to himself or herself. It's what grammarians call a complete verb. When accompanied by subjects, complete verbs tell the whole story.
    • Lay, on the other hand, means that the subject is acting on something or someone else; therefore, it requires a complement to make sense. Thus lay always takes a direct object. Lie never does.

    Tip: Always remember that lay is a transitive verb and requires a direct object. (A transitive verb acts as a conveyor belt, transmitting action or influence from the subject to the object.) The common saying, “Let's lay out in the sun,” is not only incorrect grammatically, it suggests a public promiscuity that's frowned on even in this age of sexual permissiveness because you're implying the existence of a direct object of lay: “Let's lay (her/him?) out in the sun.” Not that there's anything wrong with THAT! It's just ungrammatical unless you're talking about sex.
     
  9. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    Oct 17, 2009

    I am soooo going to read more carefully before answering grammar threads LOL :wub:
     
  10. SpecSub

    SpecSub Comrade

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    Oct 17, 2009

    All I remember is "Chickens lay, people lie."
     
  11. Rebel1

    Rebel1 Connoisseur

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    Oct 17, 2009

    LAYED is not a word!
    Rebel1
     
  12. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Oct 17, 2009

    I always get confused with that. So I try & find a different way to say it!
     
  13. wunderwhy

    wunderwhy Comrade

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    Oct 17, 2009

    lie = to recline
    lay = to place

    Present Past Past Participle
    lie lay lain
    lay laid laid

    Today I lie in bed. Yesterday I lay in bed. I have lain in bed past noon on many occasions.

    Today I lay the baby in the crib. Yesterday I laid brick. My chicken has laid many eggs.

    The answer to your question is "lay." But I hear other English teachers get it wrong all the time. Not too many people distinguish between lie and lay correctly; who wouldn't be confused by the fact that the past tense of "to lie" is "lay"? Just remember that if you say "laid" in reference to "bed," you are not implying that any resting was going on!
     
  14. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

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    Oct 18, 2009

    I was always taught that something must be alive in order to lie down. That is the only way I could ever keep them straight.
     

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