Saturday, November 19, 2016

Why is WENT the past tense of GO?

In present tense, it is GO. In past tense, it is WENT. Why is this? The two words look completely different from each other.

In the past, when English was Old English, there were two words for GO. There was GO and there was WEND. The past tense of GO was GAED and the past tense of WEND was WENT.

As time passed, WEND became less popular and GAED became less popular. In modern English, we are left with GO and WENT. GAED and WEND are no longer used. The word WANDER is related to WEND/WENT.

Why do some words become more popular and some become less popular over time? There are many reasons, but mainly they just sound nicer. Perhaps GAED and WEND do not sound as nice as GO and WENT.

Friday, November 11, 2016


Everybody knows the word ‘often’, but have you ever heard the word oftentimes?
Oftentimes is an old-fashioned word that simply means ‘often’. It is old-fashioned, but it has started to become popular once more as the chart below shows.

By the way, as an English teacher, students always used to ask me about the pronunciation of the word ‘often’.

You can pronounce it with or without the T sound – both pronunciations are correct!

Business English Listening Activities

I have just uploaded a new listening section on Road to Grammar's business English page. It features 20 short conversations suitable for...