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What is The Past Tense of Get

The verb “get” in English is one of the most versatile and commonly used. In general, it refers to the action of acquiring something or coming into possession of something, but can also be used in more casual expressions to mean “understand.”

The past tense of “get” is “got” while the past participle is also “gotten” in the US, but “got” is also sometimes used, especially in the UK where “got” is considered the correct or standard past participle. The verb “get” is also a common part of many phrasal verbs such as “get up” and “get out.”

What is the past tense of “get”?

Get (verb):

(1) To acquire, come into possession of, or receive something from another

(2) (Informal) To understand, comprehend or hear something

  • Infinitive                       to get
  • Simple Past                 got
  • Past Participle             gotten or got

Conjugation Table of “get”

 PronounInfinitiveSimple PastPresent PerfectPresent Continuous
Igetgothave got/gottenam getting
You (sing.)getgothave got/gottenare getting
He/She/Itgetsgothas got/gottenis getting
Wegetgothave got/gottenare getting
You (pl.)getgothave got/gottenare getting
Theygetgothave got/gottenare getting

Example Sentences of “get”

(1) To acquire, come into possession of, or receive something from another

  • Did you get the message I sent you this morning?
  • I left my book in the library, so I’ll have to go back and get it
  • He got the top prize in his math class

(2) (Informal) To understand, comprehend, or hear something

  • I don’t get this question at all! Can you explain it to me again?
  • He was just saying how he thinks the main reason for the decline was economic, not social, did you get that?
what is the past tense of get

Focus: Past Tense of Get

The verb “get” is an essential one to know for learners of all levels. Beginners will likely learn the word by itself, but will quickly raise that to understanding how to use it in phrasal verbs. Below are some of the various ways we can use the past-tense forms of get, with all of the following forms being used:

  • Simple past
  • Present perfect
  • Past continuous
  • Past perfect

Simple Past of “get”

  • He got low scores in his biology and chemistry tests, which displeased his parents
  • They all got messages from their employer explaining why they were being laid off
  • I got a fantastic birthday present from Mike, do you want to see it?

Present Perfect of “get”

  • I have gotten a parking ticket before, it’s no big deal
  • You have gotten yourself into a difficult situation, haven’t you?
  • He has gotten two warnings from the principal already, so this time it could be very serious

Past Continuous of “get”

  • I was getting the groceries out of the car when I heard a noise from inside the house
  • He was getting his master’s degree in education last year, but now I think he’s focused on something else
  • They were getting a lot of criticism from the public for the plan, so they decided to change it

Past Perfect of “get”

  • You had gotten perfect scores up until now, what happened?
  • He had gotten birthday gifts from his aunt every year but this year there was nothing in the mail, so he was worried

Understanding the Verb “Get”

It’s one of the most used verbs in English with a plethora of meanings, from acquiring something to becoming.

Phrasal Verbs with “Get”

  1. Get along: To have a harmonious relationship.
    • Do you get along with your coworkers?
    • They get along very well considering their differences.
  2. Get up: To rise from a seated or lying position.
    • She gets up early every morning for yoga.
    • He got up from the couch when he heard the doorbell.
  3. Get over: To recover from something.
    • It took him a while to get over his cold.
    • She’s trying to get over her recent breakup.

Common Mistakes with “Get”

  • Incorrect: She has get the groceries.
  • Correct: She has gotten/got the groceries.
  • Incorrect: I getted a new job.
  • Correct: I got a new job.

You can check other past tense words and our past tense resources by clicking on the links in the table below and in the resource list below that.

We also have a full list of irregular verbs from A – Z on the site which you can access from the link here.

Table 2: Table of Links for irregular Past Tense Verbs

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We also have articles and worksheets which we will link examples of below, and if you need more you can try the search box.

I have been a teacher of English for over 15 years, in that time i made hundreds and thousands of resources and learnt so much i think its worth sharing. Hopefully to help teachers and parents around the world.

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