Lie, Lied, Lying, Lay, Lain, Laid, Lain, Laying


Lie, Lied, Lying, Lay, Lain, Laid, Lain, Laying

A paragraph is a unit of thought. It lays out a thought and links it to the preceding and succeeding thought.” –The Schooldays of Jesus by J.M. Coetzee

“Let sleeping dogs lie.” –England proverb

Lying on the bed the whole day he lies to others over the phone and lays bets on gambling websites.

One of the easiest ways to remember as how to use the above words is to check the tenses of each word.


(Present Tense) Past tense Past Participle Present Participle
Lie, lies

(untrue, false, incorrect)

Lied Lied Lying
Lie, lies

(sleep, resting position)

Lay Lain Lying
Lay, lays

(put or place something)

He lays her hand on fruits.

Laid Laid

He laid his hand on fruits.


Lie means telling false things, misrepresenting, saying untruths. Mia knows Madhav is lying.

I was disappointed with my husband because he lied to me about his earnings.

Leena lies about her age in order to get an opportunity to act in a movie.

“One big lie I repeated a lot of times,” admitted Lance Armstrong after years of denial on taking dope.

Lie as a noun means making a statement that is not true, incorrect, intended to mislead someone.

Her remarks about her colleague are lies.

Lie-detector can nearly tell whether a person is lying or not.

Lie-lay-lain-lying: Lie as a verb has another meaning, placing the body in a sleeping or resting position, be spread out to view (The valley lays at your feet as you stand on the hilltop), be at rest on a surface (The gift-box was lying open on the table), of abstract things: exist or to be found (I only wish it lay within your power to help you).

“In the early hours of that morning (6 April 2010), they (CRPF) were ambushed by a collective squad of Maoists who divided themselves in to smaller groups and encircled the CRPF men. Some of the soldiers fought back but they were no match for the Maoists. In no time, 75 CRPF men and a local policeman accompanying them lay dead.”  HELLO, BASTAR: The Untold Story of India’s Maoist Movement by Rahul Pandita

“Man’s only limitation, within reason, lies in his development and use of his imagination.” – Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

The lie of the land and the lay of the land refer to natural features such as rivers, mountains, hills, dales, and valleys.

Lie-down (n) refers to a short rest in the bed and lie-in (n) means act of staying in bed longer than usual.

Lay-laid-lain:  Its past tense and past participle are laid. Lay is refers to keep or put something somewhere (Lay this book over the shelf), causing something to be in a certain state, betting money on something.

She lies (sleeps) laid (spread out) out in stark stiffness in that secondbest bed… – James Joyce’s Ulysses

Sam laid her sunglasses on the dining table before washing her face.

Lay (adjective) means not belonging to the clergy, not professionally qualified, and untrained.  Layman is someone without specialist knowledge.

Lay-off (n): dismissing employees because their skill were no more required or because of lack of demand for the product.

“Pope Francis lives in a suite of rooms in the Casa Santa Marta residence, which sits in the shadow of St Peter’s Basilica. The hotel accommodates visiting clergy and lay (common) guests.” The Asian Age Sunday, 9 June, 2013

“For two millennia it (Sea of Galilee) has been an important Christian pilgrimage site and also holds significance for Jews, who call it Yam Kinneret. The 64-square-mile lake lies (situated) at the base of Golan Heights and is Israel’s largest body of fresh water.” National Geographic’s Special Edition on Earth’s Holiest Places: Sacred Journeys

“Elizabethan London lay (located) as far from Stratford as corrupt Paris lies from virgin Dublin.” – James Joyce’s Ulysses

Telling lies is bad, and laying bets could lead to loss of money. Lay emphasis to cultivate good habits!

Lay waste – comes from the same root devastate, a hurricane can lay waste an island

“While earning can be increased and possibly, the surplus can be increased too, that is not the only way to increase the surplus. The problem lies elsewhere. Most people earn well, but their expenses also go up at an even faster clip, epecially lifestyle expenses.” Sunday Business Standard 9 June 2013

“I now in what, according to traditional Hindu belief, is the fourth and final stage of life, sanyaas. I should be meditating in solitude, I should have shed all attachments and all interest in worldly things. According to Guru Nanak, a person who lives into his nineties feels weak, does not understand the reason for his weakness and keeps lying down. I haven’t reached either of those stages of my life just yet. At ninety-eight, I count myself lucky that I still enjoy my single malt whiskey at seven every evening. I relish tasty food, and look forward to hearing the latest gossip and scandal.” -Khushwantnama: The Lessons of My Life by Khushwant Singh