Irregular verbs

Level: beginner

Most verbs have a past tense and past participle with –ed:


But many of the most frequent verbs are irregular:

Base form Past tense Past participle
be was/were been
begin began begun
break broke broken
bring brought brought
buy bought bought
build built built
choose chose chosen
come came come
cost cost cost
cut cut cut
do did done
draw drew drawn
drive drove driven
eat ate eaten
feel felt felt
find found found
get got got
give gave given
go went gone
have had had
hear heard heard
hold held held
keep kept kept
know knew known
leave left left
lead led led
let let let
lie lay lain
lose lost lost
make made made
mean meant meant
meet met met
pay paid paid
put put put
run ran run
say said said
see saw seen
sell sold sold
send sent sent
set set set
sit sat sat
speak spoke spoken
spend spent spent
stand stood stood
take took taken
teach taught taught
tell told told
think thought thought
understand understood understood
wear wore worn
win won won
write wrote written
Irregular verbs


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Submitted by hary77 on Tue, 22/01/2013 - 13:20


Dear English Team,

I have a question here about modal verbs. In which case or condition I have to use 'might' and 'ought' rather than should or would? I'm preparing for IELTS. I hope I will  get the right answer.

thanks in advance.

Hari, Qatar.

Dear Hari,

This page is about irregular verbs - you need to look at our pages about modal verbs! If you still have questions after that, please ask them on the relevant page.

Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Hesam MiM on Mon, 21/01/2013 - 19:46


Hello And Thanks The Learn English Team, especially Jeremy Bee & AdamJK .

If you don't mind could you tell me why the other irregular verbs are eliminate? Are the  aforementioned verbs more important than the others?       

Hello Hesam,

There are hundreds of irregular verbs in English; this is a list of the ones we feel are the most useful for learners to know.

Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

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Submitted by Anthonis on Wed, 21/11/2012 - 00:56


Sir, I would like to know the definition for irregular verb before knowing the example. Many lessons on this website straightaway give examples without definition. It would be great if definition/description was also given.  Also I don’t find lesson for regular verbs.


Hello Anthonis!


The definition of irregular is just not regular. Most verbs in English follow a simple pattern (-ed for past and past participles). Some do not. The lesson says that before the list of irregular verbs.


As for the more general question, to give a good definition, you often have to use complex or confusing language. In my experience, especially with lower level learners, giving definitions is often not that helpful since learners worry about understanding the explanation instead of using the language. A small number of learners love detailed grammar explanations - but believe me, not very many!


We don't have a lesson on regular verbs because there simply isn't much to say. You add -ed to most verbs for the past and past participle. That's it. Actually using the past and past participle is much more important!


Hope that helps

Jeremy Bee
The LearnEnglish Team

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Submitted by christina.burdakova on Wed, 14/03/2012 - 10:15



Why are the printer-friendly versions of the exercises are not opening up properly?This message appears: This XML file does not appear to have any style information associated with it. The document tree is shown below.
Is there any way to fix this?
Thanks in advance!

Hello Christina!


I don't know what the problem is! To help us find it, could you give me some information, please? Which browser are you using? If you can use a different computer, does it happen on that one as well?


Let us know, and we'll help you out as soon as we can.




Jeremy Bee
The Learn English Team

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