I am a bit confused in using drank and drunk. I know we use it with past tense but not when to use drank and when to use drunk. What are the better ways to use these?

I visited this, too, but it does not explain when to use which form. What scenarios best suit each form?


4 Answers 4


This is a tense question, (but should not cause anxiety!)

drink is the simple present tense:

"I drink the wine."

drank is the simple past tense:

"I drank the wine yesterday."

drunk is the past participle, used in the perfect and pluperfect tenses of the verb.

"I had drunk the wine before you arrived."


Drink drank drunk

  • 2
    Drunk is also what you become when you drink....
    – Jon Story
    Oct 21, 2014 at 0:00
  • Just keep in mind that some native speakers use drunk for the simple past, and even more use drank as the past particle. Also, you might see these variants in older writing. So just be aware that it is not as simple as one might like it to be.
    – user6951
    Oct 21, 2014 at 0:59
  • Thank you for your reply and comments but can you please tell me that is it right to use I drank the juice last week and if I don't remember the day whether its last week or two weeks before so then I can use it like I had drunk the wine
    – ARG
    Oct 21, 2014 at 7:45
  • *I drank the wine last week. is just fine. Oct 21, 2014 at 12:07
  • Just to confuse the matter, one can also say, "I am drunk." This works especially well if the whole bottle of wine was drunk. Dec 23, 2015 at 21:06

Drink - drank - drunk

Drink is the present - I like to drink coffee.

Drank is the simple past - I drank coffee yesterday.

Drunk is the past participle, used for the present perfect and past perfect - I have never drunk coffee, I had never drunk coffee.

  • So Is it right to say , How much water you drank today ? or how much water you drunk today ?
    – ARG
    Oct 21, 2014 at 10:44
  • no today is present tense Oct 21, 2014 at 11:50
  • so its like how much water you drink today ?
    – ARG
    Oct 21, 2014 at 11:54
  • yea correct ARG Oct 21, 2014 at 12:02
  • @ARG, Better yet would be "How much water did you drink today?" You could also say, however, "How much water have you drunk today?" Dec 23, 2015 at 21:02

So Is it right to say , How much water you drank today ? or how much water you drunk today ? – ARG yesterday

No. The question-form of the present and past simple tenses is constructed with DO:

He drinks - does he drink?

They drink - do they drink?

She drank - did she drink?

If you ask your question during the course of the day, you ask "How much water have you drunk today?" The present perfect suggests that 'today' is not yet over and that 'you' may drink some more water.

If you ask your question after the day is effectively over, for example, when you are in bed, you could ask "How much water did you drink today?" The drinking is seen as past.


If you are unsure about how to use the three stem forms, also called basic forms, of irregular verbs you should try to get a basic grammar of English where such things are explained. This topic is really one of the important things of grammar.

The three stem forms of to do are: do/did/done. And there are two special forms: does and don't (mostly not mentioned in lists of irregular verbs).

With the second stem form "did" you can only form the past tense: I did not know it.

You use the third stem form "done" for the so-called perfect tenses:

I have/had/will have/would have + done.

The third stem form is also used in all passive tenses: tense forms of to be + done:

Tenses I: The work is/was/will be/would be + done

Tenses II: The work has been/had been/will have been/would have been + done.

The third stem form is a participle meaning it has a double function. It can have verbal character and it can be used as an adjective.

PS I say "stem forms" because all verbal forms "stem" from these three forms. It is up to you which term you use. English grammars mostly use basic forms.

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