Thursday, April 3, 2014


Do you get confused when two words, almost identical, mean something different? I don't profess to know it all and one of my stumbling blocks are the words passed and past.

You'd think I'd get over it and have a clear understanding by now. All I can say is that it's getting better, but at times I find that I have used them incorrectly.

I know past is a noun, and passed is a verb. But past is also a modifier. It can be an adjective or an adverb.

Passed means to go by, to move beyond, some other object.
He passed her on the street. I passed the cup to her. She passed the test.
When using passed it should always be an action.

Past refers to a time and can be used as a noun:
There were many wars in the past.
He wouldn't speak about his past.

Past can also be used as an adverb.
He ran past the bridge.
The bus was past them before they realized.
The lady walked past the fence.

Here's one tip I remember, if there’s no verb in your phrase, then you are usually safe to use passed. 
However, if you already have the verb, then you need to use past.
Do you have anymore tips, or something to add, please do? :)