English is easy, yes, but sometimes, our words get mixed up and it causes some misunderstanding – especially with irregular verbs. If you are confused between the words payed and paid, don’t worry, you’re definitely not on your own. There are many people all over the world asking for a thorough explanation of the distinction between payed and paid. Today, in this post, we’re going to talk about their differences.
- I am paying for additional picnic blankets.
- Yesterday, I paid for additional picnic blankets.
- Yesterday, I payed for additional picnic blankets.
What is the correct past tense of the word pay in the given sentence above?
Is it paid?
When do we use payed?
Payed, though not commonly known, is the past tense and past participle of the word pay. Payed has a historic usage as a nautical term regarding ropes and ship hulls and it is used in a very regulated sense.
In the following sentences, to pay out ropes or cables means to let out by slacking.
- The captain payed out extra ropes in case of sail emergencies.
- Laying down electric lines, the ship’s crew payed out the cable as he went.
- The seaman payed out the cable as he passed through the line.
On the other hand, payed can also be used when talking about sealing the deck of a wooden ship with pitch or tar to prevent leakage.
- Has Michael payed the deck?
- This ship needs to be repaired and payed immediately to avoid accidents.
Always remember that these are the only uses of the past tense payed.
Now, what about paid?
Paid is also the past tense and past participle of the verb pay and it is widely used by many. It is probably the past tense (and spelling) you will be using most of the times.
Paid refers to anything that has something to do with money and finances. But, it can also mean other things such as to call or to visit.
- Gretel paid her tuition fee in full the other week. (Financial)
- I never paid my grandmother a visit last year when she was ill. (Non-financial)
- If Maye only paid attention to the principal, she wouldn’t be suspended. (Non-financial)
Always remember the difference between payed and paid. It’s not that difficult, right? Just keep in mind to always be very careful in using each word in your sentences because they have extremely very different meanings.
Are there any other irregular verbs you would like to learn about? Let us know in the comment below. If you want to know about catched vs. caught, we already have a blog post.
Tip: for some help while you learn the rules, check out Grammarly.