Spelling Rules For The Past And Past Participle Forms of Regular Verbs


Even though regular verbs follow a regular pattern, there are slight variations in spelling. The following tables explain the rules for spelling regular verbs in their past and past participle forms.

 

Verbs Ending in a Silent 'e'

Examples: adore, bake, close, dance, erase, live, move, serve, etc.

Steps Example
1. Base form live
2. + 'd' lived

adore + 'd' ⟶ adored

bake + 'd' ⟶ baked

move + 'd' ⟶ moved

 

Verbs Ending in a Vowel + 'y'

Examples: betray, enjoy, obey, play, stay, etc.

Steps Example
1. Base form play
2. + 'ed' played

betray + 'ed' ⟶ betrayed

obey + 'ed' ⟶ obeyed

stay + 'ed' ⟶ stayed

 

Verbs Ending in a Consonant + 'y'

Examples: carry, cry, pry, spy, try, etc.

Steps Example
1. Base form try
2. - 'y' tr
3. + 'i' tri
4. + 'ed' tried

carry - 'y' + 'i' + 'ed' ⟶ carried

pry - 'y' + 'i' + 'ed' ⟶ pried

cry - 'y' + 'i' + 'ed' ⟶ cried

 

Verbs Ending in a Stressed Vowel Plus a Consonant

Examples: ban, beg, hop, quit, refer, stop, etc.

Steps Example
1. Base form stop
2. Double the consonant stopp
3. + 'ed' stopped

ban + 'n' + 'ed' ⟶ banned

hop + 'p' + 'ed' ⟶ hopped

quit + 't' + 'ed' ⟶ quitted

 

Verbs Ending in an Unstressed Vowel Plus a Consonant

Examples: answer, happen, open, offer, suffer, etc.

Steps Example
1. Base form open
2. + 'ed' opened

answer + 'ed' ⟶ answered

happen + 'ed' ⟶ happened

suffer + 'ed' ⟶ suffered

 

All Other Forms

Examples: switch, want, watch, etc.

Steps Example
1. Base form want
2. + 'ed' wanted

watch + 'ed' ⟶ watched

switch + 'ed' ⟶ switched