The Write STUFF
Mastering lie and lay
The words "lie" and "lay" confuse even the best editor, so memorise this chart and then practise to build your confidence.
Example of to recline in present tense: I like to lie down for a nap at two o'clock.
Example of to recline in past tense: I lay down yesterday for a nap.
Example of to recline with a participle: I have lain down every day this week.
Example of to put or place something in present tense: The chickens lay eggs.
Example of to put in past tense: The chickens laid eggs.
Example of to put with a participle: The chickens have laid eggs every day this week.
Example of to tell a falsehood in present tense: I am tempted to lie about my weight.
Example of to tell a falsehood in past tense: I lied about my weight when I renewed my driver's licence.
Example of to tell a falsehood with a participle: I have lied about my weight each time I have renewed my driver's licence.
1. I can do this lying/laying down.
2. Lie/Lay down next to me and I will hold you.
3. When my dog is tired, she lies/lays on her back.
4. I think we can say we have lay/laid the groundwork for lasting changes.
5. Henry has lied/laid consistently on the witness stand.
Source: 'The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation: An Easy-to-Use Guide with Clear Rules, Real-World Examples, and Reproducible Quizzes', by Jane Straus, ISBN: 978-0-470-22268-3. Learn more at http://www.GrammarBook.com